Our curriculum is underpinned by our belief that learning is most effective when pupils first acquire surface knowledge and are then encouraged to apply this knowledge in some way, for example by writing an essay, making a judgment or solving a problem.
Research shows that learning activities that require greater depth of analysis lead to better retention in long-term memory.
We use the SOLO Taxonomy as a framework to ensure that our curriculum promotes a wide range of thinking skills, with particular emphasis on the application of knowledge and higher order thinking.
Curriculum Leaders and teachers use SOLO to design learning objectives, curriculum plans, lessons and assessments that foster an enjoyment of learning and challenge pupils to think.
Key Stage 3
Our Key Stage 3 Curriculum (Years 7, 8 and 9) provides a broad and balanced foundation for pupils to ensure that they are well-prepared for a successful Key Stage 4 in Years 10 and 11.
Particular emphasis is given to the development of strong literacy skills at Key Stage 3. Pupils’ reading and writing levels are assessed regularly throughout Key Stage 3 and intensive additional support is provided to accelerate progress where necessary.
All pupils study the core subjects (English, Maths and Science); the humanities subjects (Geography, History and RE); Modern Foreign Languages (French and Spanish); Design Technology subjects; and Creative Arts subjects, including Physical Education.
Key Stage 4
The majority of pupils undertake the English Baccalaureate, which comprises GCSEs in English, Mathematics, Science, the Humanities and a Modern Foreign Language. For the small number of pupils for whom the English Baccalaureate is not suitable, we offer alternative courses in the Modern Foreign Language option.
Pupils are also able to choose to from a range of Design Technology and Creative Arts subjects, including Design Technology, Food Technology, Computer Science, Art, Drama, Music and Physical Education.