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Curriculum Overview

Wye School is a comprehensive school that aims to provide a challenging academic education for students of all abilities. Alongside academic challenge we believe in education with character, we are not an exam factory and believe that developing the whole child is the best way of truly embedding education. Everything from which students learn in school- our taught subjects, our approach to spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, our co-curricular provision and our ethos of 'the best in everyone' - are to be seen as part of the school curriculum. 

Wye School is part of United Learning and has the United Learning curriculum at the core of our offer. The United Learning Curriculum is designed as follows:

Intent

Our aim is to provide an excellent education for all our students; an education which brings out the best in all of them and prepares them for success in life. Our curriculum is designed to provide children with the core knowledge they need for success in education and later life, to maximise their cognitive development, to develop the whole person and the talents of the individual and to allow all children to become active and economically self-sufficient citizens. By drawing on the best that's been thought, said and done in each subject, we hope that our curriculum enables children to appreciate and participate in the full richness of the human experience. 

The United Learning Curriculum is founded on these key principles:

  • Entitlement- we believe that all students have the right to learn what is in our curriculum
  • Mastery- we want all students to achieve a full understanding of our curriculum and teaching should not move on until this is achieved
  • Stability- United Learning have worked hard to design the curriculum using knowledge and experience from across England and, other than occasional changes in relation to feedback, will not keep changing it, allowing teachers to develop a deeper understanding of the curriculum they deliver
  • Concepts not context- the United Learning curriculum provides knowledge content that all students should learn, Wye School teachers add their own local context, adapting lessons to suit our location and students

Implementation

You can see the specific curricula for each subject in the other tabs under learning on this website. Subject specialism is at the heart of our curriculum and alongside the expert knowledge of our own teachers we also work with United Learning subject advisors. As a mastery curriculum our students study fewer topics in greater depth, aiming for secure understanding so that the curriculum progressively builds knowledge for each subject over time. Lower attainers are supported to achieve understanding and higher attainers are encouraged to dig deeper and produce work with greater depth and flair. Lessons build on prior learning and are built on Barak Rosenshine's Principles of Instruction:

1- Begin a lesson with a short review of previous learning

2- Present new material in small steps with student practice after each step

3- Ask a large number of questions and check the responses of all students

4- Provide models

5- Guide student practice

6- Check for student understanding

7- Obtain a high success rate

8- Provide scaffolds for difficult tasks

9- Require and monitor independent practice

10- Engage students in weekly and monthly review

 

To ensure the mastery approach is effective, which means that students learn what they need to learn in the year they need to learn it, catch-up is essential. To aid this we promptly identify students who start in Year 7 without a secure grasp of reading, writing and mathematics and implement support to enable them to access the curriculum. 

Impact

With thousands of students across United Learning following similar curricula, United Learning have developed common assessments in most subjects. These are summative assessments which all students to demonstrate their growing understanding of their subjects and teachers to assess the impact of their teaching. These summative assessments are taken once or twice a year with teachers using formative assessments in lessons to guide their teaching and check on understanding. Our formative assessments are designed to help students achieve fluency in each subject. This means quizzes on prior knowledge to embed this knowledge in their long term memory. This frees up working memory to attend to current learning. Literacy is vital for understanding in all subjects and our teachers emphasise subject-specific language and use challenging reading and writing tasks to develop literacy. Knowledge organisers provide students with the key information they need for each topic. All students are encouraged to read widely, including during our weekly 'Drop Everything And Read' sessions. 

Every student has the right to a challenging and enlightening curriculum. By teaching this curriculum well, and developing effective habits in our students, we bring out the best in everyone.

©2018 Wye School

Wye School is part of United Learning. United Learning comprises: UCST (Registered in England No: 2780748. Charity No. 1016538) and ULT (Registered in England No. 4439859. An Exempt Charity). Companies limited by guarantee. VAT number 834 8515 12.
Registered address: United Learning, Worldwide House, Thorpe Wood, Peterborough, PE3 6SB. Tel: 01832 864 444
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