"If we succeed in giving the love of learning, the learning itself is sure to follow"
At Rowlands Castle St John’s, we believe that a ‘love of learning’ and high standards are never mutually exclusive. Pupils strive to achieve through purposeful, engaging learning experiences that match their interests and are relevant to their own lives.
From September 2018, the new team of class teachers have been developing half-termly topics that match the interests of their class. Teachers work in phase teams (EYFS, KS1, LKS2, UKS2) to plan their topics in order to share the responsibly for booking trips, ordering resources and ensuring correct coverage of foundation subjects across the phase. The topics could look slightly different, however, in each year group (e.g. ‘Savage Stone Age’ in Year 3 and ‘Stone Age to Iron Age Inventions’ in Year 4) depending on the interests of the cohort.
Each topic should begin with a ‘hook’ and end with an ‘end goal’. We believe that by engaging pupils in initially, they have an emotional response to the new learning and therefore become intrigued to learn more. The ‘end goal’ provides pupils with a purposeful conclusion to their learning and gives them an audience and outcome to work towards throughout the half term. ‘End goals’ often involve inviting parents in to share the outcomes of pupils’ topic learning which helps build strong home-school links and ensures pupils see the real-life transference of their learning.
Hooks this year have included:
-Creating a class garden
-Making rain clouds
-Secret Agent Day
-Open Box Workshops
-Fire Service Visit
-Nature trail walk
End Goals this year have included:
-‘Winter Warmer’ book share to parents
-Business Pitch to parish council
-Project share to whole school
Subject Leaders monitor topic planning to ensure the curriculum is covered appropriately across each phase. Staff meetings are held each half term to share expertise and generate ideas when planning for next topics.