Oasis Academy Henderson Avenue
Curriculum design statement: intent, implementation, impact.
The breadth of our curriculum is designed with two goals in mind:
1) To give pupils appropriate experiences to develop as confident, responsible citizens;
2) To provide a coherent, structured academic curriculum that leads to sustained mastery for all and a greater depth of understanding for those who are capable.
1. Appropriate experiences
As part of a family of like-minded schools in our trust we follow the Oasis Nine Habits that we believe will create responsible citizens and unite us in our shared work:
Compassion - which helps pupils to put themselves in the position of others and to show the kindness they would expect in that position.
Patience - which helps our pupils to think longer-term about our goals and that the ‘long-haul’ reaps rich rewards.
Humility - which helps our pupils to remain grounded and equal, rather than superior, to others.
Joy - which helps our pupils to experience the happiness of the journey rather than rushing towards a destination.
Honesty - which helps our pupils to develop integrity.
Hope - which helps our pupils to have absolute faith that there is a positive future no matter how difficult present circumstances may be.
Consideration - which helps our pupils develop an integrity of character that goes beyond the self.
Forgiveness - which helps our pupils to understand the transformative power of forgiving human fault.
Self-control - which helps our pupils to recognise their emotions and to manage their actions.
We embed these 9 Habits in all our lessons and in and around the school.
Although we are part of the Oasis family of schools, we are also unique and so we have developed three curriculum drivers that shape our curriculum, bring about the aims and values of our school, and to respond to the particular needs of our community:
Community- which helps pupils to be an active, responsible member of our school, the locality, our country and the world.
Possibilities - which helps pupils to build aspirations and know available possibilities for their future lives
Mindfulness - which helps our pupils to concentrate, focus and to fully experience and find fulfilment their lives.
2. A coherently planned academic curriculum underpinned by the 9 Habits and the 3 Drivers, our academic curriculum uses either the EYFS or the National Curriculum as the basis for content and expectations. We have structured this so that each year group has:
a) a clear list of what must be covered. (curriculum map)
b) the ‘threshold concepts’ pupils should understand. (Essentials Curriculum key objectives)
c) criteria for progression within the threshold concepts (Essentials Curriculum Milestones)
d) criteria for depth of understanding. (Basic, Advancing and Deep)
The diagram below shows model of our curriculum structure:
The curriculum map for each year group ensures each teacher has clarity as to what to cover. Threshold concepts are the key disciplinary aspects of each subject that will shape pupils as, for example, historians, geographers etc. Milestones define the standards for the threshold concepts. Finally, we expect pupils in year 1 of the milestone to develop a Basic (B) understanding of the concepts and an Advancing (A) or Deep (D) understanding in Year 2 of the milestone.
Our curriculum design is based on evidence from cognitive science; three main principles underpin it:
1) learning is most effective when spaced rather than blocked.
2) Interleaving helps pupils to discriminate between topics and aids long-term retention.
3) Retrieval of previously learned content is frequent and regular, which increases both storage and retrieval strength.
In addition to the three principles we also understand that learning is invisible in the short-term and that sustained mastery takes time. Some of our content is subject specific, whilst other content is combined in a cross-curricular approach. Continuous provision, in the form of daily routines, replaces the teaching of some aspects of the curriculum and, in other cases, provides retrieval practise for previously learned content.
The impact of our curriculum is that by the end of each Milestone, the vast majority of pupils have sustained mastery of the content, that is, they remember it all and are fluent in it; some pupils have a greater depth of understanding. We assess carefully to ensure pupils are on track to reach the expectations of our curriculum.
Please click below to view our SEAL Strengths and Oasis Habits.