Our Curriculum










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Design & Technology



                                                                                      ‘Coherent, sequenced, progressive’


The breadth of our curriculum is designed with three goals in mind:

  • To provide all children, regardless of need, with appropriate experiences to develop as confident, resilient, respectful and responsible citizens;
  • To provide a rich ‘cultural capital’ to give children the wide range of experiences, knowledge of the world and breadth of vocabulary to make sense of their learning;
  • To provide a coherent, structured, broad and balanced academic curriculum which is rooted in our community and reaches out towards the world.

It is the essential knowledge that pupils need to be educated citizens, introducing them to the best that has been thought and said and helping to engender an appreciation of human creativity and achievement. OFSTED

    There are five main drivers that shape our curriculum, bring about the aims and values of our school, and respond to the particular needs of our community:

    Communication – Our curriculum will enable children to become excellent communicators with the confidence to present to different audiences, in writing and speech.

    Possibilities – Our pupils will build aspirations and know possibilities for their future lives.

    Character – Our pupils will develop the characteristics needed to become successful citizens; active, responsible members of the community; our school, the locality, our country and the world.

    Diversity – Our pupils will develop an understanding of the world and its people. To recognise, respect, celebrate and reflect upon similarities and differences.

    Motivation – Our curriculum will ensure that pupils develop confidence and self-drive; curiosity, independent thinking and a desire to learn. It will provide opportunities to reflect, to succeed and to enjoy their learning.

    Our senior leadership team and subject leaders have planned and sequenced our curriculum so that our children cumulatively build sufficient knowledge and skills to prepare them for the next stage of education.

    Cultural Capital

    Cultural capital is the background knowledge of the world pupils need to infer meaning from what they read.  It includes vocabulary which, in turn, helps pupils to express themselves in a sophisticated, mature way. It also includes experiences. Our curriculum has been developed to ensure that children build rich cultural capital during their time at Knutton St Mary’s.

    A coherently planned academic curriculum underpinned by our drivers, sets out:

    • a clear list of the breadth of topics that will be covered;
    • the ‘threshold concepts’ pupils should understand;
    • criteria for progression within the threshold. concepts;
    • criteria for depth of understanding.

    The diagram below shows model of our curriculum structure:

    • a – The curriculum breadth for each year group ensures each teacher has clarity as to what to cover. As well as providing the key knowledge within subjects it also provides for pupils’ growing cultural capital. This is taken directly from the National Curriculum.
    • b – Threshold concepts are the key disciplinary aspects of each subject. They are chosen to build conceptual understanding within subjects and are repeated many times in each topic.
    • c – Milestones define the standards for the threshold concepts.
    • d – Depth: we expect pupils in year 1 of the milestone to develop a Basic (B) understanding of the concepts and an Advancing (A) or Deep (D) understanding in Year 2 of the milestone. Phase one (Years 1, 3 and 5) in a Milestone is the knowledge building phase that provides the fundamental foundations for later application.  Learning at this stage will not be rushed and will involve a high degree of repetition so that knowledge enters pupils’ long-term memory. If all of the core knowledge is acquired quickly, teachers create extended knowledge.

     Sustained mastery

    Nothing is learned unless it rests in pupils’ long-term memories.  This does not happen, and cannot be assessed, in the short term. Assessment, therefore answers two main questions: ‘How well are pupils coping with curriculum content? and ‘How well are they retaining previously taught content?’


    Our curriculum design is based on evidence from cognitive science; two main principles underpin it:

    • Learning is most effective with spaced repetition.
    • Retrieval of previously learned content is frequent and regular, which increases both storage and retrieval strength.

    In addition to these principles, we also understand that learning is invisible in the short-term and that sustained mastery takes time.

    Some of our content is subject specific, whilst other content is combined in a cross-curricular approach.  Continuous provision, in the form of daily routines, replaces the teaching of some aspects of the curriculum and, in other cases, provides retrieval practise for previously learned content e.g., Time.


    The impact of our curriculum is that by the end of each Milestone, the vast majority of pupils have sustained mastery of the content, that is, they remember it all and are fluent in it; some pupils have a greater depth of understanding.  We track carefully to ensure pupils are on track to reach the expectations of our curriculum.

    Year Group Overviews







    For more information specific to our Curriculum please call the office on 01782 568680