Curriculum | Curriculum Overview

Curriculum Overview

We aim to provide the best possible opportunities for the growth and development of each child by ensuring a broad and balanced curriculum. We follow the National Curriculum in all subjects areas apart from Religious Education. Religious Education:

“Catholics believe that Religious Education is not one subject, among many, but the foundation of the entire educational process. The beliefs and values it communicates should inspire and unify every aspect of school life”.

(Bishops’ Conference of England & Wales, 1988)

Our first aim, as a Catholic school, is to teach the children how to live as Christians with dignity and purpose, within the traditions of the Catholic Church. We aim to work in partnership with parents developing and strengthening the children’s gift of faith.

At Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School we use Dr. Margaret Carswell’s RE Framework – the Composite model – as our long term planning for RE (agreed by Cardinal Vincent Nichols).

Daily collective worship takes a variety of forms. Assembly and class prayers are focal points which are vital in the life of the school. Whole school masses are held at the beginning and end of each term. On Holy Days of Obligation which fall on a school day, the whole school attends Mass with the Parish in Sacred Heart and Saint John the Evangelist Church.

There are also regular opportunities for liturgical and para-liturgical activities. The school has very strong links with the Parish of Sacred Heart and Saint John the Evangelist. Father Jim, the Parish Priest, is a regular visitor to school.

At Sacred Heart we follow the National Curriculum and the Early Years (under 5s) Framework.


The ambitious curriculum is coherently planned, sequenced towards cumulatively sufficient knowledge and skills for future learning and employment.  The school will:

  • provide a high quality education for all pupils so that they leave with the skills and knowledge required for the next stage of their life;
  • prepare pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life;
  • promote the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils at the school and of society;
  • ensure pupils are prepared for the general demands of the Year 7 curriculum;
  • ensure lessons contribute well to delivering the curriculum intent.



The Early Years Foundation Stage covers the period of learning for children in Nursery and Reception.  The curriculum is presented in a rich, stable, caring and effective environment that enables each child to realise their full potential.

The Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum is taught in ways that build on a child’s curiosity and interests, enabling them to learn through planned worthwhile play activities.  Children in the EYFS learn by playing and exploring, being active and through creative and critical thinking which takes place both indoors and outside.

Children in our Early Years classes follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum, which consist of seven areas of learning.

These are: Communication and Language, Physical Development and Personal, Social and Emotional Development.

These prime areas are those most essential for your child’s healthy development and future learning.  As children grow, the prime areas will help them to develop skills in 4 specific areas.

These are: Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design.

All 7 areas are used to plan your child’s learning and activities and are designed to be really flexible so that staff can follow each child’s unique needs and interests.  Although young children do not separate learning into curriculum areas and every aspect of the curriculum is interrelated and interdependent, the 7 areas form the framework on which the Early Years Foundation Stage is built.

We teach children by ensuring challenging, playful opportunities across both the prime and specific areas of learning. We recognise that all children develop and learn at different rates and so our EYFS curriculum is designed flexibly to meet the needs of all individuals. We support individual learning through our skilful interactions and observations which lead to detailed next step planning. The Characteristics of Effective Learning underpin our curriculum and pupils learning, through an enabling and well-planned environment we ensure we provide meaningful opportunities for playing and learning, active learning and creating and thinking critically. As children utilise and develop these characteristics they become effective and motivated learners who demonstrate high levels of well-being and involvement.

The principles which guide the work of all early years’ practitioners are grouped into four themes.

  • A Unique Child – every child is a unique child who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.
  • Positive Relationships – children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.
  • Enabling Environments – children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners, parents and carers.
  • Learning and Development – children develop and learn in different ways.  The Framework covers the education and care of all the children in early years provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities.  Practitioners teach children by ensuring challenging, playful opportunities across the prime and specific areas of learning and development.


Teacher assessment is used to assess the children’s progress and to inform future planning. Assessment is ongoing and part of everyday teaching. In addition to this, some standardised testing is used to monitor individual progress.

Standardised tests are carried out annually, in English and Maths from Year 2 to Year 5. Year 6 children take standardised assessments (SATs) each year in English and Maths.

Complaints about the curriculum:

Parents who feel they have a complaint about the delivery of the curriculum should, in the first instance, approach their child’s class teacher to discuss the matter. Depending on the outcome of this discussion, it may be appropriate to refer the complaint to the Headteacher. The school always works in partnership with parents to resolve any conflict and we welcome comments and suggestions.


Homework is intended to provide pupils with the experience of working by themselves, to consolidate or extend work covered in school and to develop the habit of private study.

Parents can help their children by encouraging and supporting them. Listening to them read, checking presentation, revising multiplication tables and spellings and asking them to explain the work they have been doing. The amount of homework given increases as the child progresses through the school. Details of homework for each academic year will be outlined by class teachers during our Meet the Teacher meeting. Homework (currently under the heading of home learning) can be accessed for all classes from the link below:

Nursery – St Anne

If you would like further information about the curriculum please click onto the classes pages from the link above or the individual subject pages from the link below:


For further information about the curriculum, please contact the school office on 01923 901179 or