Primary School

Key Stage One and Two

In Key Stage One and Two we follow the National Curriculum, but modify this to meet the needs of our pupils. Often the most appropriate way to engage our learners is by adopting a thematic approach to learning that ensures all subject areas are covered, using a ‘topic’ to link all subjects.

One of the most important outcomes for us is that we develop confident pupils who want to learn and enjoy learning. A key strand which underpins all curriculum areas is communication.

Theme Cycle


In Early Years, pupils are taught primarily through focused play activities. One of these will regularly be based in the area of Language and Communication. In addition, most pupils will have specific communication targets that will be worked towards throughout the school day. During the Reception year, pupils are gradually introduced to aspects of English in the National Curriculum.

English is taught as a separate subject and as an integral part of all other subject lessons. Regular targets are set according to the needs of individual pupils. Pupils within a class with similar or identical targets may then be grouped accordingly. The targets set are carefully chosen to ensure that pupils succeed, therefore developing confidence and a positive attitude to work. During English lessons pupils work towards individual or group targets in reading, writing, speaking and listening whilst experiencing the full range of literature set out in the National Curriculum. Targets are also taken into account during the teaching of other subjects.

Our pupils have access to a range of different reading schemes as well as supplementary school-based resources. These include:

• Dandelion Readers
• All Aboard
• Collins Big Cat
• Ginn 360

When our pupils are ready for the teaching of phonics we follow a structured phonics programme developed by Ruth Miskin called Read, Write Inc.

A great emphasis is placed on the development of communication throughout the entire school day. A range of additional systems is used at The Pines for those pupils who require extra support in learning to communicate. These include signs, symbols, pictures and sometimes technological aids such as “Big Macs;” a simple switch that holds a recorded message. The use of these systems gives pupils a means of developing concepts, knowledge and understanding within the curriculum and then communicating their learning to others.


In Early Years pupils are taught primarily through focused play activities. All children have individual number targets worked on either individually or in small groups.

Mathematics in Key Stage One and Key Stage Two is taught primarily during a dedicated lesson, often within the morning session. Regular targets are set according to the needs of individual pupils. Pupils within a class with similar or identical targets may then be grouped accordingly. The targets set are carefully chosen to ensure that pupils succeed, therefore developing confidence and a positive attitude to work. Opportunities are taken, wherever possible, within the wider curriculum, to extend mathematical language, understanding and knowledge.

Our foremost aim is to ensure that, as far as possible, all pupils develop mathematical confidence in the practical situations of everyday life and that they develop a positive attitude to the subject. Consequently mathematical skills are developed across the curriculum.


The science curriculum aims to help develop children’s sense of excitement and curiosity about the world around them. It aims to provide them with the skills and knowledge to be able to use science to be able to answer scientific questions and to predict how things will behave and why. It aims to provide children with opportunities to learn through practical activities and to develop scientific enquiry skills which will help them to understand the world around them and to be able to apply these skills across the curriculum.


Computing is a subject that all young people should learn in order for them to have a well-informed understanding of the increasingly digital world that surrounds them. Young people should have the opportunity to study computing and it is vitally important that all pupils have equal access to computing, so that they are equipped with the necessary skills for the future.


The History curriculum aims to help children to gain an understanding about the past and the wider world around them. It aims to inspire children’s curiosity about the past and to know more about the past. We endeavour to teach children about the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity.


The geography curriculum aims to develop children’s curiosity and fascination about the world and its people. It aims to allow children to experience and develop knowledge about human and physical geography in their locality, the United Kingdom and within a range of diverse places around the world.

It aims to help to develop children’s transferable geographical skills of being able to collect, analyse and communicate a range of data as well as enhancing their locational awareness to enable them to safely access and understand the world around them.

Design and Technology

These are creative practical activities that involve children observing, identifying, investigating, exploring, categorising, modelling, planning, making and evaluating. Pupils of all ages have the opportunity to cook. Food technology provides many important cross-curricular opportunities for learning during enjoyable and often highly motivating activities e.g. the change of liquids to solids, following instructions and procedures, turn-taking, basic safety and hygiene rules. During such activities staff respect religious and dietary observances.

Art and Design

The Art and Design curriculum aims to ensure all pupils produce creative, imaginative work. Children should have the opportunity to explore their ideas and record their experiences, as well as explore the work of others and evaluate different creative ideas. Children should become confident in a variety of techniques including drawing, painting, sculpting, as well as other selected craft skills, for example, collage, printing, weaving and patterns. Children should be given the opportunity to develop their knowledge of famous artists, designers and craft makers. Children will also develop their interest and curiosity about art and design through a series of lessons offering skills progression, and knowledge progression and offering children the opportunity to ask questions and demonstrate their skills in a variety of ways. Art lessons at the Pines School will offer the chance for children to develop their emotional expression through art to further enhance their personal, social and emotional development.


The purpose of the study of Music is to develop creativity and encourage pupils’ self-confidence, as well as providing opportunities for pupils to experience and appreciate music from a variety of genres, cultures and historical periods. The teaching of Music supports the development of exploration and communication skills, promotes teamwork and enables cross-curricula links, allowing for other subjects, including English, Maths, PE and PSHE, to be explored in a fun and engaging way.

The aim of our Music curriculum at The Pines is:

  • To provide all pupils with the opportunity to listen to and discuss a wide range of high-quality live and recorded music from a variety of genres, cultures and historical periods.
  • To provide all pupils with the opportunity to use their voices and musical instruments, to improvise, compose and perform their own music.
  • To provide all pupils with the opportunity to explore the inter-related dimensions of music, at a level that it accessible and appropriate to their needs and abilities.

Physical Education

In PE we develop body awareness and provide learning experiences in which movement plays a significant role. The development of social skills such as turn-taking and PSHE issues are given a prominent role during all aspects of physical education. All children in Key Stage Two have the opportunity to learn to swim. Consideration is given to pupils with special physical / medical needs.

Religious Education

We aim to promote spiritual awareness and to develop personal responses to issues regarding beliefs, attitudes and values. We make available to our children the opportunity to experience the rich variety of cultures that make up our city and society.

PHSE and Citizenship

This subject is taught in both a cross-curricular situation and as a separate subject. We provide opportunities for pupils to develop an awareness of themselves and others as individuals thus promoting mutual respect and understanding. There is an emphasis on personal, social and emotional development and some pupils will continue to work on individual targets developing these areas whilst accessing the wider curriculum.

Sex Relationship Education 

The Governing Body believes that sex education should not be taught as an isolated subject but as a natural part of children learning about themselves and their relationships with each other. It is therefore taught with sensitivity appropriately to the child’s age throughout their school life, and more specifically in the summer term for pupils in Year 6. Parents/carers of pupils in Year 6 are notified of the content of all lessons.