The EdisonLearning Primary Connected generic lipitor availability in us Curriculum provides a perfect starting point for exciting, engaging and motivating learning that schools can continue to develop innovatively to suit their own context.
The Connected Curriculum provides a strong framework through which the connections between subjects are clearly mapped, whilst providing adaptability and flexibility so that the lives and heritage of learners and their communities can be distinctively embedded. With distinctiveness and relevance designed in from the start, the opportunity exists to initially Adopt and Adapt and then to Create a unique curriculum that fulfils national curriculum requirements and the needs of individual learners. Importantly, the Connected Curriculum recognises the value of schools providing a balance of thematic and discrete teaching with an emphasis on both knowledge and skills.
Essentially the Connected Curriculum is a structured framework of Learning Units along with supporting documentation and CPD materials. Core Subject Science and the foundation subjects History, Geography, D&T, Art and Music are connected by theme and mapped to The National Curriculum requirements at KS1 and KS2; the Early Years Foundation Stage Learning Units are aligned to the Development Matters and Early Learning Goals/Early Years Outcomes. Opportunities to explore ICT are shown in the Learning Units and the coding aspect is dealt with via clear links to Rising Stars ‘Switched on Computing’.
Each Learning Unit has one or two focus subjects. The focus subject of a Learning Unit provides the opportunity to ‘get under the skin’ of the skills and deepen understanding of that subject area. For example, with history as a focus subject it gives learners the opportunity to know and understand what it is to be an historian.
What is The Connected Curriculum?
6 detailed Learning Units per year for years 1 – 6
6 EYFS Learning Units
“Biography in a bag” tool kit and exemplars
Supplementary “ongoing” Learning Units
Supplementary whole school Learning Units
Library of pre 2014 Learning Units
What is in a Learning Unit?
Overview of all subject activities
Suggested implementation grids
Suggested starting points and end products
Relevant sections of National Curriculum Program of Study by subject
Detailed Learning Activities by subject
Bank of Learning and Teaching Strategies
Links to EdisonLearning Learning & Life Skills
Connected, meaningful learning that covers statutory requirements
Motivated learners and teachers who enjoy learning and teaching
Learner involvement in learning
Teachers confident, through the support of the Connected Curriculum framework, to adapt learning activities and tasks to suit the needs of their learners and school community within the national and global context
Your school set up with access to materials that support you, overtime, to deliver, review, evaluate and move on to createyour own broad and balanced school curriculum
Q. Will the Connected Curriculum cover my English and maths teaching?
A. We expect that schools will continue to plan to teach English and maths discretely to meet the specific needs of their learners based on prior learning and to cover the NC Programmes of Study. However, the Connected Curriculum Learning Unit ‘themes’ provide excellent, meaningful contexts for further development of reading, writing and maths skills. Suggestions and links are made in the Learning Units and teachers and Subject Leaders can also make their own links.
Q. How will we cover all the Science if it isn’t taught every half term?
A. Science, as a Core Subject, is the focus of three of the six Y1-6 Learning Units each year. In these Learning Units, the history and geography, for example, will have less time allocated to them. There are science learning opportunities in the other three Learning Units but science is not the focus subject and therefore does not demand as much time. The balance between the subjects is achieved in this way over the year rather than over a week/term.
Q. Is there a planning format provided?
A. We do not provide a short term planning format but we do suggest a ‘planning process’ for the Learning Units in the Teacher Handbook – found on the Portal. Most schools have preferred ways of planning and short term formats that support their thinking. Some schools create their own for Foundation Subjects. The Learning Units provide a detailed plan that covers approximately 6 weeks /one half term. Teachers need to plan for the scope and sequence of how they will cover the key learning over the half term – these, as we know, vary in length from year to year so this involves making decisions and choices. When half terms are very uneven in length some schools do not use school holidays as the determining factor as to when they change Learning Unit.
Q. How will my Subject Leader monitoring work if subjects are blocked rather than being taught every week?
A. We have guidance and support materials for Subject Leaders to monitor foundation subjects on the Portal. Our suggestion is that they either carry these activities out during the term that the subject is a focus or the term after so that they are looking at books and talking to learners about current or recent learning.
Q. What are the ‘ongoing’ Learning Units?
A. These are designed to provide opportunities for Foundational Learning – learning that requires frequent revisiting to ensure regular practice of skill and automatic recall of accurate knowledge and understanding. The first is for Y1. It outlines a short session each week over a year that incrementally builds understanding of seasonal change. The second is for Y2-6. It is called History & Geography in the News and also encourages a weekly session looking at a news story – if possible linked to something being/recently learned. The session includes regular reference to maps, globes, atlases and timelines to locate the story in and across place and time and incrementally build geographical and historical knowledge, understanding and skill.
Q. What are the Whole School Learning Units?
A. The Whole School Learning Units are an opportunity to take up a whole school theme every once in a while. The Ancient Greeks is the Learning Unit we suggest schools consider using every four years in the summer term before the Olympics. It provides an alternative way to cover the geographical learning that would be in the usual Summer 2 Learning Units. It is based around preparing for and running an Olympic style sports day so requires some strategic thought/planning at the beginning of the year. The second Whole School Learning Unit, The Global Dimension, provides the whole school with the opportunity to reflect just once or at 4 yearly intervals upon the global nature of their curriculum offering. It results in a commitment, through greater understanding on the part of both teachers and learners, to giving a greater global dimension to the learning going forwards.
Q. What is a Biography in a Bag?
A Biography in a Bag is a short stand-alone exploration that is enquiry based, using a partial reveal technique, to discover the identity of a significant individual. We have included instructions on how to put together a Biography in a Bag so that teachers can create their own related to significant individuals from locality of the school, for example. There are some ready-made examples on the Portal too. Children love them!
Q. How does the Connected Curriculum Portal work?
A. Each school subscribes to the Portal and they access all the materials by logging in using a Portal password. We work in this way because we are constantly updating and adding materials. Some schools ‘gate-keep’ this. A common example has been that one person has the password (understandably to protect the school’s investment) and organises for the download, to the school network, of the year group Learning Units and selected supporting resources for teachers to access.
However, our experience is that this can limit wide and best use of the rich bank of additional resources and…provides an ongoing administrative task as we constantly add and update materials. Provided it is made clear to people that the subscription is for personnel employed within the named school and materials for the sole use within the school, it is surprising how teachers and additional adults, when given permission to explore for themselves, find things that result in fantastic outcomes!
“Middle leaders are a strength of the school. They have a clear understanding of how to develop their subject areas within the context of the school’s broad and balanced curriculum.”
“The curriculum is well designed to give pupils educational opportunities and experiences across a range of subjects. As a result, pupils learn to apply their core skills of literacy and numeracy in a variety of different contexts. The curriculum’s impact on pupils’ development and progress is strongly supported by a wealth of extra-curricular activities, including sport and music.”
“Pupils’ literacy and numeracy skills are given abundant opportunities to flourish across the curriculum in, for example, topic work or religious education. Pupils clearly demonstrate the ability to use these skills”
– St Teresa’s Catholic Primary, Bristol, Ofsted report September 2016.