8 Priorities

Aims

At the Fulbridge Academy we must ignite children’s imagination and their active, willing and enthusiastic engagement in their learning.

Our aim is to: ensure that every child succeeds; build on what learners already know; make learning vivid and real; make learning an enjoyable experience; enrich the learning experience as well as promote ‘Children’s Voice’ and ‘Assessment for Learning’.

Our curriculum should enable children to encounter and begin to explore the wealth of human experience through induction into, and active engagement in, the different ways through which humans make sense of their world: intellectual, moral, spiritual, aesthetic, social, emotional and physical, through language, mathematics, science, the humanities, the arts, religion and other ways of knowing and understanding and act upon it.

Creative Thinking is at the heart of the Fulbridge approach to learning. We aspire for the children to explore, negotiate, discover, experiment, speculate, empathise, reflect, collaborate, cooperate, persevere, show initiative, and demonstrate leadership, teamwork, curiosity, flexibility, integrity and curiosity.


Our curriculum must serve:

The Individual: by ensuring well-being, engagement, empowerment and autonomy.

The Wider World:

  • by encouraging respect and reciprocity

  • by promoting interdependence and sustainability

  • by empowering local, national and global citizenship

  • by celebrating culture and community

Children’s Learning:

  • through exploration, knowing, understanding and making sense

  • through fostering skill

  • through exciting imagination

  • through enacting dialogue

The Fulbridge Academy aspires to develop children who demonstrate courtesy and good manners and have respect for themselves, their peers, adults and other generations as well as respect for difference, language and the environment both globally and locally.

To achieve our vision and aims the Fulbridge Academy will work in collaboration with parents and the community, build on children’s learning outside school, promote high quality professional development, have high expectations of children and adults, foster appropriate pupil-pupil and pupil-teacher relationships, use new technologies, base decisions on recognised research and pedagogy, develop creativity, develop skills for the teaching of English as an Additional Language and promote outstanding leadership and governance.


Assessment 

Assessment at Fulbridge Academy

Assessing from nursery to year six how well children learn rather than how much they learn.

At The Fulbridge Academy we are a large 4-form entry primary school in Peterborough. In March 2012 Fulbridge we were judged Outstanding in all areas by OFSTED and then became an academy in March 2013. Fulbridge is a Cambridge Primary Review Trust Alliance School. There are no levels used at all throughout our school. At Fulbridge we teach the 8 domains from the Cambridge Primary Review from Nursery through to Year 6.

The Domains are taught through a Creative Curriculum. We are a ‘National School of Creativity’ and have an immersive and engaging curriculum. Children challenge themselves within their lessons:

The teachers begin the lesson by introducing and teaching the new skill. The children will then have the choice of routes to further their learning:

1)     A challenge where the children can continue to practice the skill that the teacher has taught them.

2)     A challenge where the children further their learning by applying the skill to another area of previous learning within the same domain.

3)     A challenge where the children apply the skill learnt to other skills within other domains.

Sometimes the challenges are differentiated further. For example there may be 2 or 3 challenges that support the challenge where they are continuing the practice of the skill.

These challenges link to the final outcome of the unit of work. When teachers plan they look at what outcomes they want for the unit. These are differentiated based in the age expected expectations from the New Primary Curriculum that we have rearranged into their 8 areas of learning (Described below). Four stages of assessment of these outcomes are created for each age band. These are called, Beginning, Developing, Embedding and Mastering. These stages of assessment are to allow us to assess how well children have learnt rather than how much they have learnt.

Children self and peer assess each other against the four stages of learning, as do the teachers, support staff and anyone else who has contact with the children.

Therefore, lessons are planned, taught, differentiated and assessed based on the New Primary Curriculum as well as the four stages of assessment.

At Fulbridge we have integrated the New Primary Curriculum into the 8 Domains and created areas for assessment within these domains.

At The Fubridge Academy we have developed planning and assessment formats based on the 8 domains and ‘no levels.’ We have worked with a company called ‘Pupil Asset’ who have custom-made an assessment package for us to give us all the analysis tools we need to prove progress.

We started with the principals that they wanted a package that assesses the whole child and one we can use from Nursery and Foundation through to Year 6 whilst not creating excessive paperwork. We have dropped the Foundation Stage areas of learning in favour of the 8 domains. The content of the Early Learning Goals and the Primary Curriculum has been integrated appropriately into the 8 Domains of the Cambridge Primary Review. We are assessing against four stages of learning similar to the three stages EYFS do, however we will be taking on ‘Beginning, Developing, Embedding and Mastering’ rather than ‘Emerging, Expected and Exceeding’. We made sure they created something that was not too time consuming for staff but still assesses the whole child without hundreds of tick boxes, but does the job of showing progress beyond the ‘core subjects.’

We assess the whole child. Each domain has been split into strands of assessment except ‘Citizenship and Ethics’ and ‘Faith and Belief’ that will be assessed as a domain as a whole.

Areas/strands of assessment:

Language, Oracy and Literacy:

  • Reading (5 strands of assessment)
    • Ability to Read
    • Ability to Comprehend
  • Writing (5 strands of assessment)
    • Ability to Write
    • Ability to Compose
  • Oracy
    • Ability to Talk
    • Ability to Listen

Mathematics

6 strands of assessment

  • Counting and Estimating
  • Drawing and Creating
  • Sharing and Calculating
  • Reading and Measuring
  • Patterns and Relationships
  • Sorting and Analysing

Science and Technology

4 strands of assessment

  • Physics
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Technical/Scientific Knowledge

Arts and Creativity

  • Music
  • Art
  • Dance
  • Drama

Place and Time

  • Geography
  • History

Physical and Emotional Health

  • PE
  • Swimming

Citizenship and Ethics

Faith and Belief

At Fulbridge we take a very cross-curricular approach to delivering the curriculum and, in the children’s eyes, do not teach subjects discretely. Place and Time exemplify this, as you cannot look at one without the other (History and Geography). If you are, however, to match it up with the new Primary Curriculum you need to break it down into discrete subject areas for practical assessment reasons. Our approach teaches ‘creative thinking’, ‘emotional health’ and ‘computing’ in all areas of the curriculum using them as tools rather than them being discrete assessed areas: these areas are integral to all of the 8 domains.

We are currently working on child-friendly ways of assessing that will link to the 8 Domains and areas with theses that we have decided to assess against.


Community

When we created our bespoke curriculum approach we decide that a vital component was to consider what our local community and area had to offer. For example Peterborough has a rich Tudor history and with the local attraction, Flag Fen, we had Roman and Celtic remains on the doorstep. It made sense to create historical topics around these two periods of history. When we study the ‘World at War’ this topic has a strong local component to it but also involves a visit to Ypres in Belgium.

We have strong links with our local community with respect to local churches, mosques and temples, but also with senior citizen homes and our two local councillors play a big part in our school with organising trips to the Town Hall, Cathedral and the House of Commons. We have also used Ferry Meadows, the museum, local parks/woods and the Nene Valley railway in our learning experiences.

These experiences and the partnerships we have created have enabled us to engage the children with the local culture and environment in a variety of ways. This has been a great opportunity to give real meaning to children’s voices with our involvement in Local Democracy weeks, visits to the Town Hall and meetings with neighbourhood teams when the children helped to design a local play area.

On our school site we have a Children’s Centre which has provided us with a great opportunity to make even better links with the local community.


Curriculum 

We are a Cambridge Primary Review Trust Alliance School and aim, in the words of the Review, to provide the children with a curriculum that, “engages children’s attention, excites and empowers their thinking and advances their knowledge, understanding and skill.”

Our curriculum is based around the 8 Curriculum Domains of the Review and our vision and aims follow the principles of the values and aims of the CPRT which are as follows:

Our curriculum must serve:

The Individual:

by ensuring well-being, engagement, empowerment and autonomy.

The Wider World:

by encouraging respect and reciprocity

by promoting interdependence and sustainability

by empowering local, national and global citizenship

by celebrating culture and community

Children’s Learning:

through exploration, knowing, understanding and making sense

through fostering skill

through exciting imagination

through enacting dialogue


Equity 

Equity at Fulbridge Academy has two dimensions. The first is fairness, which means making sure that personal and social circumstances – for example gender, socio-economic status or ethnic origin – should not be an obstacle to achieving full educational potential. The second is inclusion, Fulbridge Academy values the individuality of all our children. We are committed to giving all our children every opportunity to achieve the highest of standards through quality first teaching. Equality of opportunity must be a reality for our children, we provide this through the attention we pay to the different groups of children within our Academy:

  • girls and boys;
  • minority ethnic and faith groups;
  • children who need support to learn English as an additional language;
  • children with special educational needs;
  • gifted and talented children
  • any children who are at risk of disaffection or exclusion.
Pedagogy 

Pedagogy is the science and art of education, the method and practice of teaching; simply put – the way in which we teach. The Fulbridge Academy bases it’s pedagogical approach on sound educational research and best practice. Our pedagogy is exemplified in our school vision and aims.

Our teaching and learning philosophy arises from the belief that children learn best from first hand meaningful experiences that engage the child emotionally and physically in their learning. Children need to know what makes an effective learner which is why we have our Life Skills that are the skills we look for in successful learners. We aspire for the children to be able to and have the opportunity to: explore, negotiate, discover, experiment, speculate, empathise, reflect, collaborate, cooperate, persevere, show initiative, and demonstrate leadership, teamwork, curiosity, flexibility, integrity and curiosity.

There is a need for a National Curriculum and we have integrated both the Foundation Stage curriculum and the Primary Curriculum into the 8 domains of the Cambridge Primary Review. All children are entitled to a broad and balanced curriculum which includes their moral, spiritual, social and cultural development having regard for citizenship and the handling of values as well as a child’s personal development. A child’s disposition to learning is a critical factor which means that we aspire to provide high quality teaching and learning experiences, using excellent resources. It is important to highlight and prioritise each child’s entitlement to quality, breadth and balance in their learning through a creative approach that engages both staff and children with guidance and support rather than prescription.

A high staff/child ratio allows us to improve the quality of classroom interaction and offer all abilities access to their learning, we do not see the class teacher as the sole provider of knowledge and in the areas of PE and Music we use subject specialists to deliver the lessons.

By teaching and assessing through the 8 domains of the Cambridge Primary Review we are building in the broad and balanced EYFS curriculum whilst at the same time integrating the EYFS curriculum into the 8 domains.

The 8 domains are:  arts and creativity,  citizenship and ethics,  faith and belief,  language, oracy and literacy, mathematics,  physical and emotional health,  place and time,  science and technology.

We believe at the Fulbridge Academy that teaching must involve reflection, judgement and creativity so that a child’s thinking can be advanced and we recognise the importance of oracy (language) in this process as well as the use of technology and the importance of both the teachers and the pupils voice in education.

Our belief is that the issue of appropriate, professional and effective relationships is at the heart of outstanding learning – the quality of teaching, learning and behaviour are inseparable.


Sustainability


Voice


At Fulbridge Academy, we are keen not only to involve children in key decisions and improvements made to the school, but also to play a key role in the teaching and learning that takes place.

In lessons the ‘dialogic teaching’ approach is implemented. This approach, developed by Robin Alexander, harnesses the power of talk to stimulate and extend children’s thinking and advance their learning and understanding.

As a result, this helps diagnose the children’s needs, frame their learning tasks and assess their progress. It empowers children for lifelong learning and active citizenship.

Children are encouraged to think in different ways and answer with justifications, which are then followed up by the teacher. Discussions are probed which allows children to further explain their understanding.

Pupil involvement and choice extends to the children’s work – there is no grouping by ability.

Children self assess where they are with their learning and depending on how well they have understood the skill or concept that has been taught, children choose from the levels of work (challenges) the teacher offers.

As well as having pupil involvement in class, children are encouraged to actively participate in the planning and teaching of lessons.

At the end of each term, the following terms’ topic is introduced to the children. Children then think of questions on what they would like to know about the topic or suggestions of what activities they would like to be part of during the topic. The children’s notes are then used as the basis for producing an outline plan which is reviewed and refined with the children. In addition to this, children who have specialty or interest in a particular subject, can co-teach with teachers or provide assistance in class on teaching a partic

Twice a term, children are involved in circle group meetings as part of their citizenships and ethics learning. This is a whole-school approach including all pupils from reception to Year 6. Pupils are divided into multi-aged groups, which all meet at the beginning and end of term. All teachers are responsible for facilitating the circle group meetings which are mainly child led. Children discuss the importance of different life skills and how they can be implemented in their day to day lives. We hope this will aid them in

integrating and becoming successful members of society.ular skill or concept to other children.

In addition to children being involved in key decisions made in school, we also have six bodies of pupil voice that are crucial in ensuring our pupils have a voice in the running management of the school. They include:

The School Council 

Our democratically elected representatives from each year group voice the needs of our pupils to help improve the school. They are involved in major decision factors including the appointment of staff positions, improving the school grounds and contributing ideas to the planning of experiences and lessons at school. School council meetings are held once every two weeks.

The House Captains

Each pupil in KS2 is part of a house team that strive their best to bring about a sense of importance with developing the atmosphere and ideas of being part of a team. Our house captains lead those teams in joining in activities that support their fellow house members in achieving their best.

Language assistants

Language assistants speak English as an additional language, but also speak the English language fluently. As there are over 30 different languages spoken at Fulbridge Academy, we are fortunate to have range of language assistants who speak a variety of languages and can be used as effective translators.  Language assistants are used to aid children who maybe new arrivals or speak limited English. The language assistants can help them to make new friends and can work as translators for teachers in explaining new rules/routines/standards to the children. Language assistants can at times be used as translators between teachers and parents who also speak limited English.

School Ambassadors

Our school ambassadors are pupils who have been specifically trained on our curriculum and what it entails.

All children applied for this stating why they would be good for the role and were interviewed for this position.

These children are used to inform parents or our visitors about our school, explain our curriculum and the how we implement it. Some school ambassadors also speak other languages to inform visitors who may not speak English.

 Digital experts

The Fulbridge digital experts are children who have been trained on the hardware/software that is used in the school. They can be used to assist other children or adults on how to best use this technology in the classroom or resolve any problems they may have with it.

Children are given the responsibility to keep the software in their classrooms up to date and to support other children during ICT sessions.

Eco Warriors

The Fulbridge Eco warriors have the responsibility of making sure the school premises and environment stays clean and environmentally friendly. They also make sure the school is energy efficient and that every classroom is recycling in the best way possible 

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