St Joseph's and St Gregory's Primary School & Nursery

St Joseph's and St Gregory's Primary School & Nursery

Our Curriculum 

Our vision is that every child who leaves us knows they have a definite service to do; are not afraid to follow God’s call in their lives; through education discovers their unique vocation and, in discovering that, find fulfilment in life.

We successfully combine a well-resourced, nurturing environment with the challenge of high aspiration; encouraging our children to achieve and realise their full potential - all that is the hallmark of excellent Catholic education.

Our curriculum is designed to reflect the rich cultural diversity of our community, enrich and broaden the experiences of our children and ensure access to a balance of high quality knowledge and skills.

Our curriculum is driven and underpinned by our Catholic faith and virtue teaching, developing autonomy in our children, enhancing experiences for our children, offering a language rich environment and inclusion for all.

We ensure all areas of our curriculum are ‘ALIVE’.

A- Autonomy (enabling children to be curious learners, who take responsibility for what they are learning and still want to discover)

L-   Language (an environment where vocabulary and language are everywhere and in everything we do)

I -   Inclusion (all of our community are valued, welcomed and celebrated through our teachings)

V – Virtue Teaching (offering our children the understanding that learning through faith is lifelong and what they learn now will stay with them in the future)

E – Enhanced Experiences (opening doors for our children, which they might not otherwise experience, enabling them to meet new opportunities) 

Our Catholic Faith and Virtue Teaching

God is at the centre of everything we do.  We are a witness for Christ. Our curriculum is underpinned by a Catholic education based on the life and teaching of Jesus Christ, in which the virtues of the Gospel underpin all aspects of school life. There is a culture of vocation within our school, based on a belief that God blesses us each with our own gifts to be used in the service of others. Our pupils are encouraged to develop an understanding of and show respect for different faiths and cultures.

Developing Autonomy in Our Children

We believe that children must be given the tools needed to enable them to be learners. Our curriculum plans enable creativity and independence through a slowing down and exposing children to provocations that encourage children to find new pathways in their learning.  The curriculum will encourage learners to capture new ideas and find new connections through a combination of vertical and lateral thinking.  We will guide children to develop their own understanding of the learning process through the implementation of metacognition and learning behaviours.

Enhancing Experiences for Our Children

Our curriculum identifies the essential knowledge that children need to prepare them for their future success. We give our children experiences and responsibilities, providing equality of opportunities to counter relative disadvantage and different starting points. We want to open opportunity for our children, so that they experience new learning and regularly encounter opportunities that are not usually part of their lives. Our curriculum has high expectations to combine transferable skills, demonstrate a breadth of vocabulary and develop strong cross curricular links, which enable children to achieve in all areas of their lives.

Developing a Language Rich Environment

Our curriculum has been designed so that it meets the needs of our children.  Language development is a key aspect of our curriculum, due to the low language starting point many of our children have on entry to the school.  We provide our children with opportunities for communication; all subjects are built around a word rich environment, where new vocabulary is given to the children, alongside the language structures required to communicate effectively.  We hold high expectation of communication and oracy, offering adaptive learning to meet the needs of all.

Inclusion for All

Everyone at our school is valued, respected, enabled and celebrated. The curriculum provides opportunity for our children to understand and appreciate the wide range of cultural influences that have shaped our own lives and those of others. Our curriculum seeks to reflect the diverse abilities, languages, identities, and talents that have shaped our world. It is designed to equip our pupils to be good citizens and to contribute positively to life in Modern Britain, reflecting the diverse community we at St Joseph’s and St Gregory’s are so proud to be.

Our Curriculum Pedagogy

Learning in our school follows Rosenshine’s Principles of Instruction.  Research alongside tried and tested routines and practices have been used to enable our children to have a rigorous curriculum, which empowers them to become confident, independent learners.

Throughout sequential and progressional teaching, across the curriculum you will see the following principles:


What this looks like in our lessons

  • Daily review


Lessons begin with a ‘Do Now’ task as children enter the classroom or move between subjects.  These tasks are about embedding retrieval information, helping children to develop their long term memory. The Do Now task also enables high standards of behaviour to be set from the start of lessons, immediately hooking the children into their learning.

  • New material in small steps


New learning is challenging, our children rise to the occasion. When new learning is introduced, this is done in small manageable chunks.  Children are taught strategies to assist with retaining new information.  New learning is revisited through planned daily, weekly and monthly review.  

  • Asking questions


Questioning is planned.  There is a no opt out culture in classrooms.  Questioning is used to deepen understanding, and address misconceptions.  Children understand there is high challenge through questioning, however classrooms are low threat zones, where children are happy to ‘have-go’, knowing teachers are there to support their progress.

  • Providing models


Teachers model use of academic and curriculum language throughout all learning opportunities.  New vocabulary is introduced daily, with definitions, actions and rhymes to assist children’s understanding.  Sentence stems are used in all curriculum areas, so children both hear and practice good language structures.  No half answers are accepted.  Children communicate in full sentences, this is modelled for the children in all circumstances and where support is required.

  • Guided student practice


Practice through talk is part of every lesson.  This enables children to have-a-go at their learning. Through this children can happily make mistakes and take risks, knowing support will be given when needed.  Teachers model this practice, making clear steps to success, so children feel confident with their learning, and can then transfer skills to independent learning opportunities.

  • Checking of student understanding


A range of strategies are used to establish student understanding. This is done to make sure children make or exceed expected progress. Within lessons children are questioned to clarify their understanding, misconceptions are picked up and addressed immediately through feedback or planned into the next sequence of lessons.  

  • Scaffolding of difficult tasks


New and challenging tasks are modelled, with clear scaffolds available to children. This enables independent learning, with high chance of success. Scaffolding is reduced as new learning becomes more familiar to children.  Scaffolding is provided to give children understanding of how we learn- metacognition.  Children with additional needs have learning scaffolded for them, learning is therefore inclusive.

  • Independent practice


Lessons enable daily independent learning.  Children need to work on their own to embed understanding of the skills and knowledge taught.  Independent learning is closely linked to guided-student practice.  This gives children the confidence needed to happily work on their own and meet the high standards of challenge set in lessons.

  • Weekly and monthly learning reviews


Regular low stakes assessments are made across the curriculum.  These are planned, so that they are part of a sequence of learning and enable success.  Spaced repetition of learning is part of review, where previous learning is revisited, this may look different depending on the curriculum area.                                       

If you would like to find out more about our curriculum please contact a member of our Senior Leadership Team using the email address below.