Context of our school:
We are two large, thriving four-form entry Portsmouth schools with almost all children transferring from Infants to the adjacent Junior school.
We believe in “One community, two schools and achievement for all”.
There is collaboration across all phases and between the two schools: we work together sharing best practice and in the development of progressive skills across the holistic curriculum. We have an R-6 learning journey in mind, yet each school retains their uniqueness.
We believe the purpose of education in our school is:
Court Lane Schools are united in inspiring a love of learning to last a lifetime. We aim to do this for every child, at every chance and every day.
We put children at the heart of everything we do. We aim for our curriculum opportunities to foster self-confidence and promote self-belief. We capture children’s energy and enthusiasm, encouraging creativity of thought, nurturing curiosity, interest and independence. Adults aim to inspire children so that we can all thrive and can aspire to be lifelong learners and the very best we can be. We all strive to be an inclusive, safe and caring Court Lane community, where each member is respected, nurtured and valued.
Our curriculum achieves this through:
Our learners being active and empowered partners in their learning journey, equipped with knowledge, skills and attitudes, with habits and self-regulation to make decisions about learning.
We are evolving a creative, meaningful, memorable and motivating curriculum which is broad and relevant, that is enriched by first-hand experiences, has progressive skills and builds on from what children can already do.
We encourage deeper thinking from our pupils through meta-cognitive principles of modelling, questioning and reflection.
We make asking questions as important as finding answers, using subject-specific vocabulary and promoting the importance of talk for learning. The process begins with finding out what the children know and what they would like to find out within a new context. An overarching question to begin the enquiry/learning challenge is shared with the pupils and a hook that is motivating and memorable captures their attention. Backwards planning ensures that we begin with the end in mind to be aspirational, inclusive and achieve success for all, with a plan to meet the expectations for each key and foundation subject area. Subject leaders have connected progression of skills documents, National Curriculum objectives and learning verbs to create one set of planning and assessment criteria for each subject area for each half term. This promotes high expectations and clarity in taught knowledge that becomes transferred to long-term memory and embeds skills.
Statutory curriculum content is taught through meaningful and rich activities, which develop the pupils’ skills, knowledge, passion and deeper understanding. Blooms taxonomy is used by staff to layer learning to provide challenge for all to allow for deeper thinking.
Pupils’ understanding is checked, developed and refined and we evaluate what we have found out in response to our initial question. There are opportunities to showcase some of the pupils’ skills, thinking, work and learning, share answers and solutions to the original question and provide opportunities to interact with others.
Pause weeks, assemblies, competitions, selected visitors, trips out and residential experiences as well as Court Lane Crystals enrich the curriculum and provide opportunities from Year R to Year 6 for pupils to participate in a range of experiences; including volunteering for the good of the school or community, joining a club and experience a professional live music performance. This variety of opportunities allow children to develop positive relationships with other people.
The totality of experiences children have in seven years at Court Lane schools is our curriculum.
A well-educated child in our community will:
Demonstrate and develop creative, caring, collaborative and critical thinking. They will be challenged and engaged within their learning; will be prepared for what is likely to be hard, will try again, will draw on prior learning and will act on feedback, will self–assess, can make mistakes, take risks and be challenged without fear of failure in a safe and inclusive environment, i.e. a growth mindset culture. We nurture children with social skills to make their own choices in order to live a healthy and emotionally well-balanced life, instilling respect within the school community, and utilising new technology in an ever-changing world.
They will progress their skills, build their knowledge and show their understanding to develop mastery and fluency to apply key knowledge, understanding and core skills in any context. This is underpinned with opportunities to deepen and enrich thinking. Through a “know it, use it and prove it” approach, pupils are given regular opportunities to demonstrate their mastery and fluency throughout the curriculum. We aim to develop the children’s learning behaviours at CLIS through the 5Rs (Resilience - enjoying the feeling of learning; Resourceful - using many ways of thinking; Reflective - taking charge of own learning; Relating - learning from and with others; and Risk-taking - learning from trying new things).
At CLJS, this is developed further through our ethos of being ‘Ready, Respectful and Reflective’ to assist children to learn more effectively and have a set of habits and attitudes for life, enabling children to continue to flourish and face different situations calmly, confidently and creatively.
These learning behaviours will support children to build character skills - to grow to be effective collaborators, successful learners, confident individuals and responsible citizens.