A Guide to Curriculum
The intention of our curriculum at Lexden Springs Residential Special School is to give pupils the skills they need to reach their full potential in adulthood. With this in mind, we have developed a curriculum that is laid out in five areas.
Each area has an Aspirational Goal, derived in consultation with teachers. These are:
- Exploration and Discovery – To have an inquiring mind and problem-solving skills
- Me and My Community – To have an understanding of community and find ways to contribute.
- Creative Development – To use creative skills and concepts to explore the environment.
- Physical and self-help – To have and maintain physical skills to be applied in all areas of life.
- Communication and Social Interaction – To have an effective means of communicating for both functional and social purposes in all environments.
Each area will have a set of suggested targets that will help guide the skills development. This is laid out in five levels which allows teachers to level the pupils and to use the suggested targets to inform individual pupil need in order to progress. Skills can be and should be broken down to be more meaningful to the individual in the EHCP process if they are identified as needing specific focus.
Implementation is through the planning for skills progression targets and EHCP outcomes by using our medium-term template. Activities and experience in the classroom will be the vehicle to practising skills.
There is a topic grid in place for each Key Stage that clearly lays out what should be taught from the schemes of work and when. The schemes of work are written to show progression of experience as pupils go through the Key Stages in each curriculum area.
The Teachers role in planning is to use the EHCP and progression targets to be a focus for skills learning and to use the ideas from the schemes of work to create a purposeful set of activities that allow pupils’ individual needs to be met – so progress can be made. The activities must be adapted and supported to be meaningful and purposeful for the class.
Activities such as TAC PAC, What’s in the Box?, Soft play etc. will be included in the planning where appropriate and the learning intentions from these are clearly documented and monitored.
Not all of the targets from the progression document linked to the curriculum areas will be used in the EHCP but will be marked off for the individual as they progress through the document at their own pace. Progression grid documents have been developed with reference to EYFS, pre Key Stage standards and the SCERTs documents primarily, but other documents have been researched and considered in the development process.
Measuring the impact of the planning and teaching by assessing the levels of the pupils against the progression targets allows us to see value added as they go through the school. We also make regular assessments on the pupils individual EHCP targets using the schools Assessment Guidance Grid.
At post 19 we trace pupils for 3 years after leaving school so we can see the impact of the learning at school and how that develops once they leave school, successfully transitioning on to other services.
Traditional “subject” content is covered within the 5 areas of the curriculum offered here at Lexden Springs Residential Special School. The table below shows where the themes and foundation skills for more traditional subjects can be found in our school.
It also includes some of the areas within school and the ongoing provision that is available and where they fit within our curriculum offer.
Pupil’s experiences throughout the school will be tailored to their needs and we always aim to offer content that is both age and stage appropriate to all our young people.
Our curriculum is set out in five areas these are Communication and Social Interaction, Exploration and Discovery, Me and My Community, Creative Development, Physical and Self Help. Cognition is a set of skills that underpin subject specific learning as recommended in the Rochford report, these are taught across our curriculum in all five areas. Once a child reaches a certain point in their learning they will have more focused English and maths targets.
These five areas are taught through a topic approach which is laid out in a four year rolling programme for each Key Stage, or the long term planning.
Medium term plans link to the curriculum areas and the topics for the term, within each medium term plan there are individual IEP outcomes planned for, this enables IEP targets to be worked on across all five curriculum areas throughout the day.
The National Curriculum, EYFS Curriculum and Preparing for Adulthood documents are represented in our curriculum.
Subject specific development
- Sex and Relationship Education; Personal, Social and Health Education (SRE/PSHE): We are very mindful of how we deliver these aspects so that they are relevant and meaningful to the individual. They are taught across Exploration and Discovery, Me and My Community and Physical and Self Help. We also work with outside agencies for our older pupils to access boys groups and girls groups that have more explicit content and family support.
- Physical: All children have a plan for their physical entitlement in school this could include hydrotherapy, rebound therapy, OT designed sensory activities, structured PE sessions, Physiotherapy, standing and cycling as part of the MOVE programme. Physical activity is functional and meaningful.
- Religious Education; We interpret the meaning of RE for our pupils and teach the principles as part of the individualised personal plan as the experiences must be appropriate to the learning levels of the pupils. We build in time for reflection and religious experiences into the school day and a joint worship is offered on a weekly basis for those who can access through assemblies, again these times must be meaningful and purposeful for the pupil.
- Subject Specific Learning; a small number of pupils in our school will be working at subject specific level for some subjects, or areas within subjects, this means they will have targets that reflect the learning that needs to happen. For example, reading will usually be around symbol recognition speaking and listening work will be around AAC. Pupils follow the Bug Club phonics programme. As with all areas of learning within our school it must be meaningful and purposeful for the pupils.
Areas of personal development
- Britishness; We believe the fundamental concepts around Britishness are part of our culture and the environment in which the pupils are schooled, we encourage democracy through the school council and have various assemblies based on themes that are important to the concept but again these are all adapted in order to make them accessible and meaningful for our pupils.
- Functional skills; Wherever any of our pupils can achieve any sort of independence, this is pursued, encouraged and promoted throughout the curriculum areas. Functional skills like continence, assisting with personal hygiene routines, helping with or independently dressing and undressing, eating and drinking skills, mobility are just a few of the areas that will be built into and worked on as part of the pupils individual plans.
- Characteristics of Effective Learning/Engagement; Playing and exploring, Active learning, Creating and thinking critically are fostered throughout all the curriculum areas and throughout the pupils time with us at school as these skills are important to us all even as adults!
Assessment at Lexden Springs Post Rochford Review
Assessment and Evidence of Progress at Lexden Springs
- We have developed an IEP assessment system to analyse progress data
- We are in a planned period of change in terms of assessment and curriculum
- At Lexden Springs we are making better links between the curriculum we teach and our assessment arrangements. We have developed a new vocabulary (moved away from P scales), for baseline and assessment linked to pupil achievements. (See Skills progression Diagram )
- We have developed assessment by looking at participation of our pupils curriculum areas relevant to their needs as set out in the EHCP.
- The Annual Review of the Educational Health care Plan is at the heart of our assessment, teaching and learning. We use the review meeting to discuss what is important for the pupil to develop in terms of skills to meet their needs and to prepare them for the future.
- Pupil outcomes are driven from the annual review process, we work with the family to ensure outcomes reflect family priorities and concerns (including those of the pupil).
- We use the SCERTS Framework and principles to set targets for Social Communication and Emotional Regulation. We place a great emphasis on pupils gaining these skills are they are at the foundation of all learning.
- We are becoming more systematic in delivering information on individualised and personalised outcomes and pupil progress towards individualised learning intentions
- We have strengthened our moderation so that we can be certain that we are delivering robust and relevant outcomes that are holistic and wide ranging
Assessment and curriculum are closely linked as the curriculum meets individual needs of the pupils and the assessment evaluates pupil progress against targets related to learning strengths and needs.
The curriculum has been redesigned, as the school wanted to focus more closely on the strengths and needs of the pupils. This approach ties in closely to the SEND Code of practice. Targets for pupils are led by the areas of need highlighted in the Education, Health and Care Plan. (EHCP). These areas are, Social Communication, Emotional regulation, Cognition, Self Help and Independence, and Physical and Well being. These areas also link to our curriculum areas; Communication and Social Interaction, Me and my Community, Exploration and Discovery, Creative Development and Physical & Self Help. Work Related learning is a feature from EYFS, but with increasing focus as pupils move through the school.
|Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)||School baseline, Development Matters SCERTS, IEP||EYFS|
|KS1||SCERTS, IEP,||EYFS (up to year 1 term 1) We do not assess on the EYFS frame work after Rainbow class, topic based curriculum covering the 5 areas|
|KS2||SCERTS, IEP, P Progression Profile||topic based curriculum covering the 5 areas|
|KS3||SCERTS, IEP, P Progression Profile||topic based curriculum covering the 5 areas|
SCERTS, IEP, P Progression Profile
|topic based curriculum covering the 5 areas, work related learning|
|KS5||SCERTS, IEP, Progression Profile, accreditations, SILSAF||topic based curriculum covering the 5 areas, work related learning|