Wider Curriculum Opportunities and Cultural Capital
Our curriculum extends beyond the National Curriculum and includes a wide range of enriching experiences and opportunities both within and beyond the school day. This includes an extensive programme of extra curricular clubs which support the core curriculum offer, as well as those which develop specialist skills, such as music, or cookery, whilst also extending the range of children’s experiences (Cultural Capital).
A primary focus of our curriculum, is to raise aspirations, engender a sense of personal pride in achievement, and provide a purpose and relevance for learning.
The school takes pride in providing a highly inclusive environment, where learners demonstrate high levels of enjoyment in their education and make very good progress across the curriculum. Children at all levels are helped to achieve their potential. All children are challenged, encouraged and supported through tasks which provide opportunities for deeper learning as well as targeted support to embed skills.
In addition to our exciting and stimulating cross-curricular themes we also provide further opportunities to enhance children’s learning whenever possible.
Forest School and Outdoor Learning - Wildwood Days
Forest School is a Scandinavian initiative designed to encourage and inspire individuals of any age through an innovative, long term, educational approach to outdoor play and learning in a woodland environment. As a school we are very fortunate in having our own woodland area and a teacher trained to deliver the Forest School programme.
Forest School is offered to all our children from Foundation Stage to Year 6. Sessions are designed around the needs of the group to ensure that they are learner-led. Sessions can also be designed around a theme, themes are sometimes subtle such as evolving or exploring the site or more obvious such as butterflies or nature investigators.
Many areas of the National Curriculum are intrinsically covered in the Forest School experience without the programmes needing to be curriculum led. Teamwork skills are developed through games and activities. Individual skills and self-esteem are heightened throughout activities such as hide and seek, shelter building, tool skills, lighting fires or environmental art, the list is endless! Each activity develops intra and inter personal skills as well as practical and intellectual skills.
We also value the benefits of outdoor learning. Children are stimulated by the outdoors where they can undertake a range of practical activities to support and enhance learning across the curriculum.
Opportunities are built into the curriculum for children to continue learning beyond the classroom including undertaking fieldwork and enquiry based-work in the local area.
Educational Visits and Residential
School trips and visits are an integral part of the education of children at our school. We value the opportunities such visits offer our pupils and the commitment of staff and adults undertaking them. Trips include class visits aimed at bringing learning alive and providing first-hand experience; extra-curricular outings such as activities with the school choir or sporting events; and attending or taking part in performances or competitions.
Children in Year 5 and 6 take part in a residential visit. This is planned to provide opportunities for the children to learn about themselves, others and the environment, to try new things outside their comfort zone and make life-long memories.
Visitors into School
Visitors have a valuable role to play and can contribute to many aspects of the life and work of the school. They deliver talks, workshops and full day activities across a wide range of subjects, giving pupils access to outside experiences and expertise. Visitors provide a link with the wider community – children have the opportunity to work alongside artists, musicians, authors, health professions and others.
Opportunities to Volunteer
Volunteering is an activity that everyone can get involved in and benefit from. At St. Joseph's we promote and encourage pupils’ active citizenship and positive contribution to the school and wider community. We offer lots of opportunities for pupils to take on new responsibilities and be involved in successfully supporting the life and work of the school. These include:
Within the classroom, children can volunteer to take on various responsibilities. Pupils tell us that they enjoy the opportunity to volunteer, to help make their school an even better place to be and enjoy rising to the challenge that additional responsibility brings.
School Council and Eco Council
Children from Years Receptipn to Year 6 are invited to stand for School Parliament and Stewardship Team as Stewards of the Earth.
Members of the Parliament and Stewardship Team will :
St. Joseph's Head's Team
Our Year 6 pupils also have the oppportunity to apply to be part of The Head's Team.
Head's Team pupils are responsible for representing the school. They also serve as a good role model for all pupils, and they share pupils' ideas within the School Parliament. They may also be expected to lead worship, lead fellow pupils and school MPs in their duties.
Our Head's Team share a passion and commitment for St. Joseph's Catholic Primary School; they are the link between the pupils and staff at St. Joseph's. They demonstrate positive behaviours and act as role models for all pupils. The Head's Team support the school at events, they contribute to the effective running of the school and they take responsibility as role models for younger pupils and help to ensure that the school is a safe and secure place for all pupils.
Extra Curricular Clubs
As a school we offer pupils opportunities to participate in extra-curricular activities before, after school and during lunch times. At any time, a wide range of clubs are on offer – our programmes of clubs and activities available is revised termly depending on the time of year and other commitments children may have.
Sports Clubs from Rec to Year 6 across the Year