The intent of our Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) curriculum is to deliver an education which draws on excellent practice, rooting in the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils, helping them to understand more about how to play a successful positive and active role within our society.
The objectives of our overall curriculum are set out to empower and support our pupil’s pastoral education through Jigsaw, a scheme of work aimed at preparing pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life. The scheme of work makes excellent links between our academic aims and the modern world in which children live in today. St Teresa’s pupils will access a bank of resources through Jigsaw, accessible to all abilities, facilitating good quality teaching and learning.
At St Teresas, we reinforce the importance of positive mental health and promote a pupil’s sense of self worth by creating opportunities for them to contribute to school life and the wider community. We challenge them to continuously live out our school core values of Love, Teamwork, Ambition and Trust. In addition, our PSHE curriculum aims to equip all our pupils with a firm understanding of what it means to live by British values, individual rights and responsibilities as well as quipping children with a sound understanding of risk, with the knowledge and skills necessary to make safe and informed decisions in life.
St. Teresa’s curriculum focuses on embedding good lifelong learning behaviour through the NED mantra (Never giving up, Encouraging others, Doing your best). In our school, PSHE can encompass many areas of study including but not limited to:
- drug, alcohol, and tobacco education
- financial education
- sex and relationship education (SRE)
- the importance of physical activity
- diet for a healthy lifestyle
- personal health
- family and relationships
- citizenship and the world of work
All year groups participate in discrete PSHE lessons on a weekly basis, where they will develop the key skills to recognise emotions, manage and maintain friendships and keep abreast with current affairs which affect the world around them locally, nationally and globally. Supported by the PE and Science curriculum, children will also be taught to keep their minds and bodies healthy, the importance of balanced nutrition and the impact of exercise on their mental well-being.
In addition to Jigsaw, St Teresa’s aims to put the ‘how’ and meta-cognition of learning at the heart of education through Building Learning Power Week (BLPW) once every half term. This approach assigns PiXL’s LORIC characters (Laura Leadership, Olly Organisation, Raj Resilience, Izzy Initiative and Charlie Communication) to a key focus each half term. Examples of other themes explored within PSHE teaching and learning are Mindfulness, Children’s Mental Health Week and World Mental Health Day.
The breadth of our PSHE provision extends to:
- Nick Carter’s – ‘Deep Fear’ workshop, aimed at helping children manage fear and anxiety,
- Key texts for each year group
- Worry Ninja Workshops
- High school transition sessions with SATs/ Educational Well-being Practitioners.
- Moving up- Parents workshops for Year 6
- Parent Gym- Workshop for parents for early years comprising of 6 workshops in the autumn term around key themes, e.g. communication, setting boundaries, effective communication.
Relationship Education is taught in the summer term following guidance from the Catholic Southwark Diocese, covering many aspects of the Science curriculum and teaching pupils about safe and positive relationships whilst managing changes in their bodies as they grow. Please see our SRE section of the website for more information on this.
Whilst all PSHE learning is documented in a class scrapbook, pupil voice at St Teresa’s remains paramount to the success and delivery of our PSHE curriculum. Our children are encouraged to form sensible and fair views, opinions and perspectives based on passions, interest and ambitions.
At St. Teresa’s we are aware that children need to be able to participate effectively and safely in an expanding and constantly developing technologically rich world. Our aim is to develop the digital literacy of our children so they can engage safely and ethically with digital media and future, key technologies. We aim to teach the knowledge and skills that will enable children to make sense of, and contribute to, the digital world both in school and outside.
By the end of Key Stage 2, our objective is for pupils to:
- have a secure understanding of, and be able to apply, fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation;
- be able to analyse problems in computational terms, and have had repeated practical experience of writing computer programs in order to solve such problems;
- be able to evaluate and apply information technology, including new or unfamiliar technologies, analytically to solve problems; and
- be responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology.
At the start of the academic year, all pupils are taught a series of online safety and digital citizenship sessions. Through the Rising Stars Switched on Computing scheme of work, we provide an inventive and inspiring, project-centred computing curriculum designed for Early Years up to Year 6. The curriculum comprises six units covering programming, computational thinking, creativity, computer networks, communication and productivity. Weekly slots are allocated to each year group for Computing as well as a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) week in the Summer term for cross-curricular activities to further enhance the curriculum . We are very well resourced with a large suite of Chromebooks operating G Suite for use across the school.
Children in Year 4, 5 and 6 have the opportunity to participate in an after-school coding club to develop their programming skills. Children explore how to use Microbits and other practical applications of computer coding.
We believe history should be thought provoking, fun and memorable so that children can take their learning forward into their futures and use it to help them build their own history. St Teresa’s aims to provide a stimulating and exciting, enquiry based history curriculum that kindles curiosity and enables pupils to gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world.
Our curriculum is driven by a progression of skills and key questions that ensure:
- a wider, more detailed and chronologically secure knowledge
- sharper methods of enquiry and communication
- a deeper understanding of more complex issues and of abstract ideas
- to understand history’s key concepts: Continuity and change in and between periods; Cause and consequence ( to question, identify and give reasons for historical events, situations, changes); similarities and differences (children are able to make observations and describe social, cultural, religious and ethnic diversity in Britain & the wider world) and to be able to recognise, describe and Identify historically significant people and events
- a greater independence in applying all these qualities which enables pupils to analyse trends, frame historically-valid questions and create their own structured accounts, including written narratives and analysis
Starting and ending topics with KWL grids (what I know, would like to know and have learnt) and teaching using DEAL (describe, explain, analyse and make links), equips pupils to ask insightful questions, think critically, weigh evidence, challenge arguments and develop their own perspective and judgement of people, places, civilisations and events, whether from time periods within or beyond living memory. History is taught through a topic led curriculum whereby learning is not only accessed through a dedicated, weekly history hour but also cross curricular through subjects such as; literacy, maths, art, DT, RE, geography, music, science and PSHE, as well as via external trips, visitors and theme days, providing rich and memorable learning for all pupils.
At St. Teresa’s Catholic Primary School, we put Jesus at the centre of all that we do. God’s love is the foundation of our school, we aim to support the children within our community with the necessary tools to live out the values directed by God. We aim to guide children through Christ, to respect others and become moral citizens of our community. This is embodied within our school core values (Love, Trust, Teamwork and Ambition), Gospel values and teachings of Jesus Christ. We aim to provide a loving environment in which children can grow in the knowledge and understanding of the Catholic faith, but more importantly, to develop their own personal relationship with God.
The Diocese approved scheme ‘Come and See’ scheme is used throughout the school from Nursery to Year 6. The programme is made up of a unit on a particular theme, taught across the school, each half term. Each topic follows the same steps of: Explore, Reveal and Respond
Explore- An introduction to the topic, where children’s life experiences are explored, the question(s) it raises are wondered at, shared and their significance is reflected upon.
Reveal- An opportunity for children to gain knowledge and understanding of the Catholic faith. This is revealed using different mediums including: Scripture, Traditions, Prayers, Rites and Christian living
Respond- Learning is fully understood assimilated, celebrated and responded to in daily life
At St. Teresa’s, we ensure that we study other world faiths, while encouraging the development of learning about other cultures, beliefs and traditions. We celebrate and embrace differences and have an understanding and mutual respect for other religions, showing our love for our neighbours within our society.
Relationship and Sex Education
‘A journey in love’ is a Southwark diocesan recommended programme of study for Catholic schools for Relationship and Sex Education. It has been written as a progressive scheme of work that supports the Religious Education, PSHE and Science Curriculum taught at St. Teresa’s. The programme aims is to support children and parents in Catholic schools to enable the holistic growth of children.
Areas of Study
Nursery- Wonder at God’s Love
Reception- God loves each of us in our uniqueness
Year One – We meet God’s love in our family
Year Two- We meet God’s love in the community
Year Three- How we live in love
Year Four- God loves us in our differences
Year Five Gods loves me in my changing and development
Year Six- The wonder of God’s love in creating new life
In the Summer Term, meetings are held with parents to review the content and discuss any concerns or questions that parents may have.
Science is an incredibly important part of our curriculum at St Teresa’s. In an ever-changing world, we are constantly faced with huge social, technological and environmental issues that need to be resolved. Our children will be the solution. Therefore we are keen to champion Science and all Science, Technological, Engineering and Mathematical (STEM) related subjects at our school and ensure our children value these. Our children’s natural curiosity about the world around them is strengthened as a result of this approach. As well as this, our children become more actively involved in their own learning, become more reflective learners and gain a strong scientific knowledge and understanding.
We firmly believe in a hands-on approach to the teaching of Science that provides our children with an excellent opportunity to solve scientific enquiry in an engaging and memorable way. The problem-solving and investigative approach to science is not only more enjoyable for our children but also enables them to build upon ‘working scientifically’ skills which develop and build a solid foundation for learning about the nature and processes of science. Where possible, our science objectives are also linked to other aspects of our curriculum at school, such as the core texts children read in English, the skills the may apply in Maths and at times a period of history that is science related.
Science is taught through the Knowledge and Understanding of World strand within the Early years curriculum. Across the school in Year 1 to Year 6, depending on the year group, four to five units are taught covering all aspects of the scientific processes. All children are taught from an early age to identify the types of enquiry skills needed to solve scientific investigations. These are made clear to the children in each lesson and the ‘working scientifically’ skills they will be using: These are:
- Observations over time
- Secondary source research
- Comparative and fair testing
- Pattern seeking
- Identifying and classifying.
The teaching of science is enriched by numerous science trips taken across each year group which includes trips to the RHS Wisely Gardens, the Natural History Museum, The Science Museum and Kew Gardens, as well as local trips e.g. Morden Hall Park where studies are made into river pollution and classifications of animals within their habitats.
At the end of each unit teachers use their assessment judgement to consolidate understanding. In the Summer term, we celebrate our incredibly popular STEM week and children participate in a fantastic learning opportunities such as inspirational talks from people in STEM careers, programming competitions, science fairs and science workshops.
Science at St Teresa’s is our new special web page celebrating all of the fantastic science achievements at our school, and a great platform for children to share child-friendly science news. You will also find links to helpful websites which could assist you with teaching science at home or making fun experiments.
At St Teresa’s, we believe that Geography is a subject which helps to provoke and provide answers to questions about the natural and human aspects of the world. We seek to inspire in our children, a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people which will remain with them for the rest of their lives. We aim to teach the knowledge and skills that will develop children’s understanding of diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, and of the Earth’s key physical and human processes.
More specifically, by the time our children leave our school we aim for them to have a knowledge and understanding of the following:
- The location of globally significant places – both terrestrial and marine – including their defining physical and human characteristics and how these provide a geographical context for understanding the actions of processes
- The processes that give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world, how these are interdependent and how they bring about spatial variation and change over time
We aim for our children to be competent in the geographical skills needed to:
- Collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that deepen their understanding of geographical processes
- Interpret a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS)
- Communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.
Geography is a subject that is promoted and celebrated within our school through classroom maps and corridor displays. At St Teresas, Geography is mainly taught as a discrete subject, whilst making cross curricular links when possible. To ensure we provide sufficient coverage of national curriculum requirements for Geography, we follow the Twinkl Planit Scheme of Work for our delivery of this subject. Through this scheme, we provide an inspiring, enjoyable and stimulating Geography curriculum which allows children to achieve depth in their learning. Throughout each of the units that we teach, we provide ample opportunities for regular opportunities to develop their skills within the key Geography subject areas, locational and place knowledge, human and physical Geography and mapping and fieldwork skills. Careful consideration is given to how greater depth will be taught, learnt and demonstrated within each lesson, as well as how learners will be supported in line with the school’s commitment to inclusion. At St Teresas, we recognise the importance of allowing children an opportunity to apply what they have learnt in the classroom to the real world, as a result, we ensure that all year groups go on a field trip each year. Each year group is designated a different area in our local area of Merton to explore and carry out specific field work tasks. To further support the children in the development of their mapping skills, we use an online mapping programme, Digi-maps in mapping based lessons. Digi-maps allows children to access historical maps, view maps at different scales as well as create their own maps in which they can annotate and customise.
Our Environmental Focus
At St Teresa’s, we believe that it is part of our moral duty as Catholics to develop children’s awareness of the environmental issues that are affecting the world right now. Pope Francis highlights the damage currently being inflicted on the Earth by humans in his book titled Laudato si. and calls on ‘every living person on this planet’ to make urgent changes to our lifestyles. Pope Francis implores us to work together to look after our ‘common home’, creating a better future together.
In alignment with Pope Francis’ message, we are working hard to ensure our school is as kind to our environment as possible. Our Eco Warrior Committee, (a group of selected pupils from across school, led by our Geography subject leader), have set up various initiatives within the school which aim to inspire, remind and encourage pupils to follow the Three Rs (Reduce, Recycle and Reuse) in all aspects of the school day and at home. Through organised ECO days, children are given an opportunity to deepen their understanding of a specific environmental topic and a chance to reflect upon how they can make their own positive contribution towards the environment.
Within our most recent ECO day, we focused on the issue of plastic pollution; each year group explored the extremely damaging effects plastic is having on our environment through a range of interesting and stimulating cross curricular activities. We aim to explore other key ecological themes such as Deforestation and climate change within future ECO days. Ultimately, we aim to teach children that although our world is facing some major environmental problems, each and every one of them has the power to make a positive difference. We hope our pupils leave our school as environmentally conscious individuals who have a deep appreciation, love and respect for which Pope Francis calls our ‘common home.’
With a diverse range of languages spoken at St Teresa’s, we aim to proudly celebrate and enjoy the nuances of language learning, whilst nurturing a love for communicating through new sounds and words. By fostering an understanding of cultural traditions and interesting facts related to the target language, children will develop a wider global understanding giving them a sense of ‘cultural currency’ if not access to a completely new world.
Accessing new linguistic terrain will enhance children’s knowledge of their own language, as well as help them to make connections with other languages and phonetic patterns or sounds that are novel and unfamiliar. Most importantly, communicating with others takes on a whole different form, delivering a feeling of liberty and success.
Research has proven that learning another language means the brain has to cope with complexity as it deciphers and absorbs new patterns. As a result, problem-solving and cognitive processes are improved, including memory, the ability to multi-task and an improved awareness of the structure of a child’s first language.
Studies show that as a result of these “higher cognitive” skills, that the benefits of learning a new language include higher scores in Maths, reading comprehension and vocabulary, by multilingual students, as compared to monolingual students. Therefore, the benefits of accessing language learning impact all academic areas of a pupil’s learning.
St Teresa’s have a strong relationship with Merton Music Foundation (MMF) who work with our children on a regular basis, including the twice yearly event at the Royal Albert Hall, in which children from St Teresa’s take an active part in. The MMF blog keeps us all up to date about our students ‘harmonious learning’!
“The artist is not a special kind of person; rather each person is a special kind of artist’” – Ananda Coomaraswamy.
Excellence and enjoyment are at the heart of our Art and Design curriculum at St Teresa’s. We value the importance of the arts provision to nurture the whole child. We believe it allows each individual to use their imagination to inspire their creativity, take risks and extend their cultural understanding. This will promote enjoyable, memorable learning experiences and develop an individual’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural understanding of the world in which they live.
In line with the requirements of the National Curriculum pupils will be taught to develop a wide range of skills and knowledge which will include:
- Exploring visual, tactile and sensory qualities of materials and processes.
- Developing observational skills with attention to detail.
- Understanding colour, shape and space and pattern and texture and use these to represent their ideas and feelings.
- Using a wide variety of media in appropriate ways.
- Evaluating a piece of work and be able to go on and modify/change it.
- Reflection on how to develop their skills further.
- Developing the skills of appreciation of other people’s work.
- Designing and making a variety of images and artefacts.
Weekly curriculum time is allocated in Key Stage 1 and 2 to the teaching of Art. The use of long term planning facilitates the organisation of a broad, balanced, coherent and differentiated curriculum. Knowledge, skills and understanding are progressively built upon through each of the areas of experience of Drawing, Painting, Print-making, Collage, and 3D. The 3D element of our art curriculum is taught in each year group by the Art subject leader as part of our local curriculum offer. There are guidelines on appropriate activities for each year group, with areas of overlap according to the children’s needs and abilities. Art activities are not limited to the medium-term plan provided. Teachers can explore the opportunity to focus on linking art to topics and other areas of the curriculum, especially linking to the spiritual, moral, social and cultural well-being of the individual. Through a progression of activities, we will build on, and develop children’s artistic skills and achievements. A key component of our art curriculum is the exploration of both contemporary and historic artworks from a range of artists, designers and cultures.
Our Art at St Teresa’s website showcases the work happening across the school and is regularly updated. Our site also includes links for families and other visitors to art galleries and events in London which are suitable for families.
Through our teaching of mathematics here at St Teresa’s, we intend to provide our children the opportunity to develop their mathematical fluency, while also providing the opportunity to develop critical and analytical thinkers within our school. We intend for our pupils to become better, more able problem solvers, who can remain resilient when challenged and who can think systematically and efficiently, across a wide variety of contexts across the curriculum, by the time they complete their primary education.
Our mathematical teaching and learning is based on a ‘mastery of maths‘ approach; mastering maths means pupils develop a deeper and longer-term understanding of the subject. Teaching for mastery enables a more developed understanding to take place, that is more secure and can be readily applied and adapted at a later stage and allowing pupils to move on to more advanced material.
We aim to ensure that all pupils can: –
– become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately
– reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language
– can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevere in seeking solutions.
The quality of teaching at St. Teresa’s is consistently strong, ensuring that children have high expectations of themselves and make rapid progress.
English, mathematics and science remain very important and are considered the core subjects in both primary and secondary education. Continue reading “Learning Overview”
PE is a very important part of the life at St. Teresa’s Primary School. We provide a variety of opportunities for the pupils so that they can work as an individual, in pairs or in group games and activities. All KS1 and KS2 Children receive 2 hours of timetabled PE each week.