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Key Stage 1

Key Stage 1 Curriculum

English

The aim of English is to develop the essential skills of speaking, listening, reading, spelling and writing. These related skills play an important part in every aspect of learning throughout the curriculum.  We aim to build on understanding and use of language through a wide range of activities.  We recognize the needs and talents of individual children and endeavour to foster enjoyment and pleasure in communicating effectively.

Spoken Language

At Maids Moreton CE School every effort is made to foster the development of spoken language, enabling pupils to express themselves clearly and confidently, using standard English.  Pupils are taught to develop their competence in spoken language and listening to enhance the effectiveness with which they are able to communicate across a range of contexts and to a range of audiences. Pupils learn how to take turns and when and how to participate appropriately in conversations. Conversation and discussion are encouraged, so that children are able to ask and answer questions, understand and follow instructions, express their ideas, thoughts, feelings and emotions.  Children are encouraged to widen their vocabulary, as they progress through the school, ranging from describing their immediate world and feelings to developing a broader, deeper and richer vocabulary to discuss a wider range of topics.

Pupils are taught to:

  • listen and respond appropriately to adults and their peers
  • ask relevant questions to extend their understanding and knowledge  
  • articulate and justify answers and opinions
  • give well-structured descriptions, explanations and narratives for different purposes, including for expressing feelings
  • maintain attention and concentration, and participate actively in collaborative conversations, staying on topic and initiating and responding to comments
  • speak audibly and fluently with an increasing command of Standard English
  • participate in discussions, performances and role play.
  • gain, maintain and monitor the interest of the listener(s)
  • consider different viewpoints, attending to and building on the contributions of others

Reading

Great emphasis is placed on the teaching of reading in terms of both word recognition and comprehension. Our aim is to encourage reading as a pleasurable and fulfilling activity so that children develop a love of books, not only while at school, but for life.  

A wide range of books is available and children read regularly to teachers and teaching assistants, in guided reading groups or individually.  From the Foundation Stage we encourage the children to take home reading books and value the involvement of parents in nurturing reading skills.  

A variety of teaching strategies are used to suit the needs of the individual child.  As children develop as readers, they learn to use phonics, contextual clues and predict story outcomes.  Children are encouraged to discuss the stories they read, stating preferences and giving reasons for their choices to support the development of their comprehension skills. To further extend their reading and their interest in books the children regularly use the well stocked library selecting from the fiction and non-fiction texts. Children also develop their reading skills and phonic knowledge through daily phonics lessons using the Letters and Sounds Programme. Further information on the teaching of reading and phonics can be found in the reading and phonics section of this website.

Writing  

At Maids Moreton we follow the National Curriculum for English which involves a daily lesson of one hour duration for Years 1 and 2.  Through the teaching of writing children are taught composition, grammar, punctuation, spelling and handwriting. Throughout the school discrete and cross curricular opportunities are provided for composition through creative and poetic writing, factual accounts and recording, captions, lists, diaries, letters and instructions. Grammar and punctuation are taught alongside vocabulary enrichment to enhance the quality of children’s writing.

As children become familiar with the conventions of spelling, they are introduced to common spelling patterns in phonics and English lessons and are taught to spell words that occur frequently in their writing and attempt spellings themselves, using their phonic knowledge.  When the children are ready, we encourage them to learn spellings at home each week.

Handwriting is a skill which must be learnt and practised.  Children are taught the correct ways of forming letters to develop a neat, legible style of writing, adopting a cursive script.  They are encouraged to take care and pride in the presentation of their work. Children are encouraged to write individually, in pairs, as well as in groups. They use different forms of technology to record their work.

Mathematics

At Maids Moreton we follow the National Curriculum for Mathematics 2014.  The principal focus of mathematics teaching in Key Stage 1 is to ensure that pupils develop confidence and mental fluency with whole numbers, counting and place value. This involves working with numerals, words and the four operations, [addition, subtraction, multiplication and division].

At this stage, pupils also develop their ability to recognise, describe, draw, compare and sort different shapes and use the related vocabulary. The study of geometry also includes learning the vocabulary of position and direction. Teaching involves using a range of measures to describe and compare different quantities such as length, mass, capacity/volume, time and money. Pupils also learn about fractions and statistics. Pupils are required to read and spell mathematical vocabulary, at a level consistent with their increasing word reading and spelling knowledge at Key Stage 1.

Following the guidance of the National Curriculum, we have a daily mathematics lesson which consists of a mental and oral starter, main teaching input to introduce or consolidate a new topic, whole class or group work relating to the main teaching input, and a plenary session intended to reinforce the skills learned and to address any misconceptions.

Children are given opportunities to use and apply their skills and knowledge to solve problems and are regularly challenged to develop logical thought processes. Mathematics is not only taught as a discrete subject but the skills and knowledge are applied throughout the curriculum.

Science

Science is taught throughout the school, with the emphasis on observation, exploration and discovery. Our aim is to harness children’s natural curiosity, to help them understand the world around them and to develop enquiring minds. We teach them specific scientific skills and processes, preparing them to live and work in an increasingly scientific and technological world.

Teaching and learning opportunities are enhanced by using quality resources, the school grounds, visits and visitors to school e.g. Hand Up Theatre. We also take advantage of the workshops provided by the Royal Latin School in Buckingham, which has Specialist Science School status.

During Years 1 and 2, pupils are taught to use the following practical scientific methods, processes and skills through the teaching of the programme of study content:

  • asking simple questions and recognising that they can be answered in different ways
  • observing closely, using simple equipment
  • performing simple tests
  • identifying and classifying
  • using their observations and ideas to suggest answers to questions
  • gathering and recording data to help in answering questions.

The programme of study for Year 1 pupils includes plants, animals including humans,  everyday materials, and seasonal changes. In Year 2 children study living things and their habitats, uses of everyday materials, animals including humans and plants.

Computing

Computing is an important part of the curriculum and is used as a valuable tool to enhance and support the children’s learning. We aim to teach children the necessary skills to become confident and successful in the use of technology. Computing is not only taught as a discrete subject, but is used extensively to support learning across other curriculum areas. Each classroom has an interactive whiteboard, computer workstations, and a wide range of software. All children have access to listening banks, visualisers, microscopes and digital cameras. The portable bank of 16 laptops and 6 ipads is regularly used in all classes giving the children access to the internet and to a range of software to support all areas of the curriculum. Internet access is also available in the school hall via a large computer operated screen. The internet is based on the County Broadband network which provides the necessary security and protection for the children.

In the study of computing, children learn to understand what algorithms are; how they are implemented as programs on digital devices; and that programs execute by following precise and unambiguous instructions. They learn to create and debug simple programs and use logical reasoning to predict the behaviour of simple programs. They use technology purposefully to create, organise, store, manipulate and retrieve digital content and recognise common uses of information technology beyond school.

They are taught the importance of using technology safely and respectfully, keeping personal information private; identify where to go for help and support when they have concerns about content or contact on the internet or other online technologies.

Design Technology

Design Technology encourages the children to express their creativity and develop thinking and problem solving skills through an iterative process of designing and making.  Tasks are set in relevant contexts and enable pupils to design purposeful, functional, appealing products for themselves and other users based on design criteria. The children generate, develop, model and communicate their ideas through talking, drawing, templates, mock-ups and, where appropriate, information and communication technology. They are taught to select from and use a variety of tools and equipment to perform practical tasks safely and to use a wide range of materials and components, including construction materials, textiles and ingredients. 

Children develop technical knowledge through building structures, exploring how they can be made stronger, stiffer and more stable, and by using mechanisms in their products. As part of their work with food, pupils learn how to cook and apply the principles of nutrition and healthy eating to prepare dishes as well as learning where their food comes from. They reflect on the success and functionality of their finished product, by evaluating what has been successful in their design and what improvements or adaptations they would introduce next time.

History

We encourage our children to develop an awareness of the past, using common words and phrases relating to the passing of time. In Year 1 pupils are taught about changes within living memory in national life through the study of toys, British seaside holidays and homes, as well as studying the history of their own locality. The local village provides a rich source of first hand evidence and we also actively utilise the knowledge and expertise of parents, grandparents and members of the local community. 

In Year 2 children study events beyond living memory that are significant nationally or globally, including The Great Fire of London and Remembrance Day. They also explore and compare the lives of significant individuals in the past who have contributed to national and international achievements.

Throughout the Key Stage, the children learn where the people and events studied fit within a chronological framework and identify similarities and differences between ways of life in different periods. They use a wide vocabulary of everyday historical terms through   asking and answering questions. The children learn some of the ways in which we find out about the past and identify different ways in which it is represented.

Artefacts, books, internet sites, photographs, visits and visitors as well as re-enacting everyday situations from the past, all help children to gain knowledge and raise their awareness of chronology, the passage of time and the differences between modern life and bygone times.

Geography

Through the study of geography pupils acquire knowledge about the world, the United Kingdom and their own locality. They develop basic subject-specific vocabulary relating to human and physical geography and begin to use geographical skills, including first-hand observation, to enhance their locational awareness.  Over the Key Stage, children develop locational knowledge through naming, locating and identifying characteristics of the four countries and capital cities of the United Kingdom and its surrounding seas and naming and locating the world’s seven continents and five oceans. They learn to identify seasonal and daily weather patterns in the United Kingdom and the location of hot and cold areas of the world in relation to the Equator and the North and South Poles. Their place knowledge is developed through studying the human and physical geography of a small area of the United Kingdom, and of a small area in a contrasting non-European country.

Geographical skills and fieldwork enable children to use aerial photographs and plan perspectives to recognise landmarks and basic human and physical features of localities; devise simple maps; and use and construct basic symbols in a key. They also learn to use simple compass directions and locational and directional language, to describe the location of features and routes on a map. A range of resources are used to enhance the children’s learning. These include visits, DVDs, library books, atlases, globes, maps, the internet and artefacts, as well as visitors to school.

Religious Education

Christian beliefs and principles form the basis of religious education in this Church of England school and underpin our school values.  We follow the Christian calendar, celebrating the important Christian events throughout the year.

Religious Education is taught, as required, from the Buckinghamshire Agreed Syllabus ‘Challenging RE’.  RE lessons offer the children the opportunity to explore beliefs and practices of the Christian and Jewish faiths, learning about religion and from religion. Children consider the influence of Jesus’ teachings on their own lives and are encouraged to develop a tolerance and respect for the beliefs of others.

Visits to places of worship, handling artefacts, videos and visitors enhance the children’s understanding.

In line with 1988 Education Act parents may withdraw their child, on religious grounds, from Religious Education as well as Collective Worship.

Music

In music, pupils are taught to use their voices expressively and creatively by singing songs and speaking chants and rhymes.

Singing is at the heart of our music making, both in class lessons and during assemblies. The children have weekly singing practice where they learn songs and hymns which they perform as part of the daily Act of Worship as well as in school productions and concerts.

The school has a wide selection of tuned and untuned percussion instruments used by the children to accompany songs and to compose simple rhythms, in groups or individually.  

Children are encouraged to listen with concentration and understanding to a range of high-quality live and recorded music in a variety of styles and from different periods and cultures.  They learn to experiment with, create, select and combine sounds through the inter-related dimensions of pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture, structure and appropriate musical notations.

Individual piano and guitar lessons are available, at a fee, provided by an external professional teacher.

Physical Education

The National Curriculum for physical education aims to ensure that all pupils develop competence to excel in a broad range of physical activities, are physically active for sustained periods of time, engage in cooperative and competitive sports and activities and lead healthy, active lives.

All children are taught gymnastics, games and dance. They learn to master basic movements including running, jumping, throwing and catching, as well as developing balance, agility and co-ordination, and begin to apply these in a range of activities. They participate in team games, developing simple tactics for attacking and defending and perform dances using simple movement patterns. Traditional maypole and country dancing are performed annually as part of our Mayday celebrations.

We aim to foster the enjoyment of sport and help children to appreciate the importance of exercise for health including the need to warm up in preparation for, and cool down after, exercise. We help children to appreciate the value of teamwork and develop confidence in their own ability as well as celebrating success and being gracious in defeat.

The school hall is well equipped and the large field provides excellent facilities for our before and after school clubs run by external professionals, free of charge as part of the Sports Premium funding. These include cheerleading, street dance, ballet, gymnastics, multi-skills, football and Activate. Sports Day is held in the Summer Term.  This comprises of individual and team events.

The children benefit from our membership of the Buckingham School Sports Partnership which offers the opportunity to experience and participate in a variety of sports in a specialist, competitive environment.

Art

In Art the children are given the opportunity to express themselves through various mediums, using a variety of tools and techniques.  They use a wide range of materials creatively to design and make products. They are exposed to many art forms, traditions and cultures and are encouraged to produce accurate representations and imaginative, original responses to such stimuli.  

Pupils are taught to use drawing, painting and sculpture to develop and share their ideas, experiences and imagination and to develop a wide range of art and design techniques using colour, pattern, texture, line, shape, form and space. 

Children learn about the work of a range of artists, craft makers and designers, describing the differences and similarities between different practices and disciplines, and making links to their own work.

Display of children’s work is an important part of the aesthetic culture of the school.  It improves the visual environment and shows the children their work is valued.

Personal, Social, Health and Citizenship Education (P.S.H.C.E)

As a school, we aim to promote healthy, independent and responsible members of society. We encourage our pupils to play a positive role in contributing to school life and the wider community in accordance with ‘Every Child Matters’ government guidelines.

The children are given the opportunity in P.S.H.C.E lessons to develop confidence and self-motivation and a better understanding of their rights and responsibilities in our diverse society. The P.S.H.C.E curriculum is taught both discretely, using the SEAL (Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning) units of work, as well as through other subjects e.g.English or history, as part of RE or assemblies and through ‘Circle Time’, science topics and outdoor educational visits and activities.

Sex and Relationships Education

We believe SRE should not be delivered in isolation, but be firmly rooted in our Personal, Social and Health Education and Citizenship programme, supplemented by Science, the National Healthy School Standards, Circle Time and other subjects of our taught curriculum e.g. Religious Education, Physical Education, English.

As the children are relatively young, the Governors and staff recommend that Sex and Relationships Education is not taught as a discrete subject.  However, young children ask questions as part of their natural curiosity and these will be answered sensitively and honestly in a manner which is appropriate to the age and maturity of the child. Such discussions are always taken with due regard to family values and multi-cultural issues.

Multicultural Education

The children are introduced to other religions and cultures to give them a better understanding of societies from various parts of the world as well as communities in Britain. This may be approached through different curriculum areas, discrete topics, assemblies, visits to places of worship or visitors to school. Stories from different cultures play a significant part in the teaching. Britain today is a society of many cultures and this should enrich society for all.  We aim to prepare children to live in this multicultural society with the knowledge and understanding to enable them to form and modify their opinions about others, particularly those whose customs and backgrounds differ from our own. 

The staff and Governors believe in multicultural education for all pupils and totally oppose any form of racism.

Collective Worship

An Act of Collective Worship is held each day.  It provides an opportunity for communal celebration, a time for reflection and prayer, and forms a foundation for spiritual and moral growth. 

The Headteacher is responsible for planning assemblies which are based on Christian values and celebrate the festivals of the Christian calendar.  Stories and festivals from other countries, cultures and faiths are also shared at this time.

The school has close links with the local parish church – St.Edmund’s and regular services are held there providing opportunities for parents and friends to join the staff and children for worship.  The Rector and his team lead Collective Worship each Wednesday.  Parents are invited to the last Wednesday assembly of every month.  Individual classes also organize their own assemblies to which parents are invited.  

At Maids Moreton it is hoped that all members of the school community will share and join in Religious Education and if parents wish to have their children withdrawn from daily worship and Religious Education lessons, they should contact the Headteacher to ensure that alternative arrangements can be made.