Curriculum is the main substance to Education
In this section
- Expressive Arts Faculty
- Humanities Faculty
- Languages Faculty
- Mathematics Faculty
- Science Faculty
- GCSE Examinations
- Learning Support
To provide a broad and balanced curriculum which helps young people make sense of the world in which they live, and which develops the skills they need to succeed in life.
We want our pupils to become:
- Successful and positive learners who enjoy, progress, and achieve well and with a positive mind set.
- Confident individuals who live safe, healthy, and fulfilled lives
- Responsible and active citizens who make a positive contribution to society and their environment.
- Proud to achieve well and see inspiration in celebrating success.
What are we trying to achieve?
- Pupils achieving the highest standards possible at Key Stages 3 and 4, as well as being prepared well for the transition to post-16 studies.
- Pupils becoming more resilient and skilful at reasoning, information processing, enquiring, creative thinking, evaluating, and problem solving.
- Pupils developing the real-life skills to be more creative, independent, and reflective learners and to be more effective team workers and effective self-managers.
- Pupils being more effective participators in the local and global community.
- Pupil being engaged and motivated and see the relevance of their learning in modern society.
In Key Stage 3 our curriculum has been designed with a broad suite of traditional subjects. The themes adopted by subjects are based on the cross curricular dimensions. These are mapped out to ensure full and well-timed coverage. Progression maps have been designed to ensure both a secure transition to Key Stage 4 and to enable skills to be transferred and applied across the curriculum.
We have moved to focus on key processes as well as key concepts and we have focused on the development of skills in lessons. Teaching strategies such as collective memory, reading images and fortune lines have been demonstrated and adopted by subjects. Kagan structures have also been demonstrated to promote effective participation. Personal Learning and Thinking Skills are developed through subjects; there is a real focus on these skills through the 5 PSHE “challenge days” which occur throughout the year. These are calendared and incorporate careers education and guidance and curriculum pathways. Our Key Stage 3 curriculum develops the skills required in time for a positive start to the Key Stage 4 curriculum in Year 9.
Our three key Teaching and Learning priorities this year are:
- to develop and enhance the use of ‘feed forward’ sheets as a form of assessment and to inform planning
- to continue to develop VIPERS in order to continue with our whole school literacy drive
- to develop strategies in ‘retrieval’ in order to aid pupils’ memory of learnt knowledge.
Our Key Stage 4 starts in Year 9 for all subjects to enable a fuller, consolidated and mastery approach to learning. It also allows us to be more synoptic in our coverage. The additional year allows the time to deepen understanding, practice skills through repetition and consolidation tasks for learning to move towards the ‘long term’ memory stage. We offer a broad mixture of traditional GCSE subjects as well as vocational and BTEC courses in sport, technology, hospitality and catering, and music.
Pupils also study vocational based courses in ICT. On average approximately 80% of each cohort study a full suite of EBACC subjects. For a small number of pupils there is an opportunity to access a more vocational curriculum with time built in to support the development of numeracy and literacy, which are required for them to be successful post-16. Market research during the options process helps us to tailor the curriculum to the changing needs of our pupils.
Minimum Expected Grades
Understanding the progress pupils are making is vitally important for parents. At Moorside High School each pupil is given a minimum expected grade (MEG) for each subject. We do not set target grades, these place a ceiling on expectation.
Minimum Expected Grades are the lowest grade your child should be aiming for. We want all our students to exceed these. This is created by the Fischer Family Trust and represents the minimum expectation a student should achieve if they attended one of the top 20% of schools in the country. These are recorded on students exercise books, as an indicator to help pupils to continually judge their performance after each assessment.
If at any point a pupil is achieving less than their MEG, teachers are guided to put in place interventions to support improvement. Some interventions may be targeted at an individual child, whilst others may be targeted to manage a common misconception, or key skill area for a larger group. These interventions can take place in class, or in an extra session in the pupil and staff members
We formally report to parents three times a year via Arbor. We report the MEG for each subject and a Professional Predicted Grade. The Professional Predicted Grade is the grade your child’s teacher expects they will achieve based on their current attainment, effort and attendance. Comparing these grades will help you understand what your child is in line to achieve alongside what you might reasonably expect.
The website curriculum area has learning journeys for every subject, which can support pupils and parents in understanding how the curriculum content is sequenced. These can also be found in the front of all pupil exercise books. Pupils record their MEG on this learning journey and set themselves an aspirational grade they would like to achieve.
Academic support is provided in lessons and through tutor time. After each assessment point, the teacher will discuss the progress being made with your child. Targets will be set to address any areas for improvement or further extension. This process is supported by the Form Tutor and Head of Year, who will place pupils onto a progress plan where appropriate. This is an opportunity for the form teachers to praise and reward each pupil for areas of great progress and discuss how they have achieved this, as well as if such strategies could be used to support area of development.
Students on the SEN Register who require additional 1:1 tutoring to meet their needs may be withdrawn from specific lessons to access support from SENSS tutors, teaching assistants or Dyslexia Institute staff. These periods will be negotiated with staff and where possible withdrawal from a specific subject will not take place for periods longer than a half-term block. Additionally, pupil premium pupils may also receive 1:1 tutoring for English and Maths, which will be negotiated in a similar way.