At Chilton, we aim to provide a curriculum that breaks cycles of disadvantage, opens horizons for all and levels the playing field. Our curriculum supports the development of the whole child, so they become kind and respectful children who are confident, resilient and curious life-long learners. We provide children with a safe learning environment, where highly skilled practitioners support the children to form strong and secure relationships. Children feel valued and are comfortable to take risks with their learning as a result.
Our curriculum ensures children have strong foundations in all areas of learning; giving them the academic skills, emotional awareness and moral purpose they need to become valuable members of our local community. Our school values, of respect, equality courage and kindness, provide the cornerstone of our children’s personal, social and emotional development and are embedded throughout our curriculum. The children are taught about ‘The Chilton Way’ from day one, leading to the development of effective learning behaviours that continue throughout the school.
At Chilton, we recognise the huge importance that speaking and listening skills play in children’s future success both academically and socially. Language and communication, alongside high quality phonics and early reading are the heart of our curriculum.
Communication and Language
At Chilton, we provide a language rich curriculum in a number of ways. We engage children in stories, rhymes, poems, songs, non-fiction. Additionally, we run daily ‘Time to talk’ activities. These are carefully planned games and activities led by our experienced staff to give children opportunities to practise the speaking and listening skills they need. Finally, we run an extremely effective early intervention programme. All children are screened by our specially trained speech and language Teaching Assistant, using the Language Link Screener. This identifies any children who may need some additional support. This can range from 1 to 1 or small group work. We aim to ensure children leave Reception with the confidence and ability to use a rich range of vocabulary and language structures.
Personal, Social an Emotional Development (PSED)
Children’s personal, social and emotional development is crucial for them to lead happy and healthy lives, and is fundamental to their development. At Chilton, children learn to build and manage healthy relationships, understand and regulate their emotions, develop a sense of what makes them unique and celebrate the similarities and differences between us all. Through the year we will use stories, circle time and learning about people from our past to explore the school values (respect, equality, courage and kindness) and how they relate to ourselves and our own lives. We have three ‘Healthy Relationship’ weeks during which we explore friendship and kindness and what to do if a relationship is becoming unhealthy. Additionally, in order to help children understand their emotions and begin to be able to regulate them, we use the ‘Zones of Regulation’ framework. Through this, we teach children about their own well-being and introduce them to mindful activities such as yoga and guided peer massage.
Physical activity is vital in children’s all-round development, enabling them to pursue happy, healthy and active lives. We have teacher-led gross motor and fine motor time daily, gross and fine motor activities available during child-initiated play as well as weekly Physical Education sessions led by our specialist sports teachers. Throughout the year, children will also learn about healthy lifestyle choices and the effect of staying active and making these choices can have on their well-being.
At Chilton, we pride ourselves on having a book rich environment, where children can read stories, poems, rhymes and non-fiction. Each classroom has an inviting book corner where adults and children spend time together sharing books. In addition, we set up our environment to encourage children to mark make in their play both inside and outside. Alongside fostering a love of reading and writing, our staff use the Read, Write Inc programme to give children the phonic skills they need to become confident readers and writers. To complement our phonics programme, we use engaging and exciting ‘Power of reading’ picture books within our topic learning in the afternoon.
Developing a strong foundation in number, shape, space and measure is essential, so that all children develop the necessary building blocks to excel mathematically. We provide natural and engaging resources and activities to encourage counting, comparison of quantities, exploration of patterns, space and shape and most of all discussion between pupils and adults about Maths. New concepts are taught in small steps and children are given opportunities to apply their newly acquired knowledge and vocabulary through play.
Understanding of the World
Understanding of the World involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and community. We plan this learning from what the children are interested in. We explore our local parks and beaches, meet important people from our local community and enjoy hands-on experiences from visiting mini-beasts and farm visits. We learn about past events from our own and others’ lives, as well as learning about what life is like in other parts of the world. The children love to learn about other cultures and religions, studying Topics, such as Chinese New Year, Diwali and Easter around the world. Through this they learn to truly value what diversity across the world brings.
Expressive Arts and Design
The development of children’s artistic and cultural awareness supports their imagination and creativity. Through our curriculum we offer children opportunities to explore and play with a variety of media, materials, tools and model a range of techniques. We encourage them to experiment with colour, design and texture and to go back to what they have created to see if they can improve it. The children will have one dedicated music session a week, led by a specialist teacher. This will be followed up in class with opportunities to create dance sequences, compositions and perform songs and rhymes.