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Early Year Foundation Stage

The Early Year Foundation Stage curriculum is planned around pupil interests and identified themes. The majority of time across the day is child-initiated learning in both Nursery and Reception phases. Within each daily Nursery session pupils will also receive whole class adult led sessions for phonics/early reading and number.

Reception pupils receive whole class adult led session in phonics/early reading, writing and number on a daily basis. Learning activities are based around objectives from Development Matters in The Early Year Foundation Stage non-statutory guidance materials.
* See Early Years Foundation Stage Policy

Key Stage 1 and 2

Our curriculum is designed to meet the needs of our own school community but includes the 2014 National Curriculum at its centre. The following key areas of learning underpin our curriculum design and are embedded in provision across the curriculum: social development, basic skills (reading, writing, calculating), communication skills, positive learning attitudes and resilience, computing skills, self-esteem building, problem solving and enquiry, independence and life skills, wider real life experiences, aspiration of both staff and pupils, physical and mental health, development of pupils’ talents and interests.

Classes across the school are made up of three parallel mixed ability groups within a cohort. Setting will only be used for specialist subject areas, phonics. Pupils will access all core subject sessions and Magic Monday activities with their class teacher, except for sessions which are covered by PPA teaching staff.

Teachers will adjust timetables flexibly to fit around pupils learning needs and lesson design. Pupils who require further support or extension may access further adult support in the class or be withdrawn for intervention activities.

Teachers send out via email a parents’ information letter at the start of each term to inform parents of curriculum coverage over the term as well as arrangements for homework, school trips, tips on how to support your child at home and equipment required.

Subjects are taught as discrete lessons, through topics or thematically. Wherever relevant cross – curricular links are made between subjects.
*See Curriculum Policy.

Curriculum Statement


Enrichment Activities Map
Year 1 Weekly Curriculum Plan
Year 2 Weekly Curriculum Plan
Year 3 Weekly Curriculum Plan
Year 4 Weekly Curriculum Plan
Year 5 Weekly Curriculum Plan
Year 6 Weekly Curriculum Plan
PSHE Scheme of Work

Magic Mondays (Terrific Tuesdays, Wicked Wednesdays)

The aim of Magic Mondays is to inspire pupils at the start the week through an intensive and immersive unit of work focussing on the curriculum areas of: Science, Music, Art and Design, Design Technology, History, Geography or RE. Themes from the Magic Monday focuses are then pulled through into Core subjects during the rest of the week, e.g. If the Magic Monday theme is World War 2 pupils may then study Anne Frank’s diary in Literacy and create their own diary in English during the rest of the week.

Core subjects (Tuesday to Friday)

Pupils will access activities grouped in to six core subjects each day, objectives from these core subjects will also link into Magic Monday activities. We feel continued exposure to these core areas of learning will help to embed the basic skills pupils will need to prepare them for their future.

The core subjects are made up of:

Phonics / Reading

In Key Stage 1 pupils will be grouped by ability for phonics sessions. Letters and Sounds phonics programme is used to develop phonics knowledge and reading skills, pupils then progress on to the Accelerated Reader scheme when they are reading at an appropriate level. Once pupils are confident readers they will access reading sessions rather than phonics sessions. Reading activities will focus mainly on independent reading, comprehension activities, whole class or group guided reading and follow up tasks.Pupils are encouraged to access the ReadingEggs / Reading Eggspress website or App both in and out of school to develop their reading skills.


English sessions will focus mainly around writing composition, spelling, punctuation, grammar and handwriting. Sessions will build towards one piece of extended writing per fortnight which will be quality marked by the class teacher and then used to feedback to pupils before they edit and improve their work. * Spoken language will be evidenced and assessed across all subjects.


Calculation sessions will cover number skills including calculations, number and place value, fractions, decimals and percentages. Pupils are also encouraged to make use of the schools subscription to the Mathletics website both in and out of school to practice their calculation skills.


Maths sessions will cover measurements, geometry and shapes, statistics, ratio, proportion and algebra
* Calculations and Maths sessions will build towards one piece of extended work (usually enquiry based) per week which will be quality marked by the class teacher.


PE sessions will take place two out of every three days. PE sessions will include a variety of sports and physical activities while educating pupils around physical health and the impact of exercise on their body. Children have opportunities to participate in intra-school competitions, inter-school competitions, cluster, town and regional competitions. Swimming lessons are provided for children from Year 1 to Year 6.


Computing sessions will run every third day and be designed around the computing curriculum objectives, while various forms of IT will be used across all curricular subjects to further pupils understanding of the uses of IT and to extend learning within those specific subject areas.

Social Development

Weekly Social Development sessions will focus on spiritual, moral, social and cultural development activities while also including community contribution activities, SEAL (Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning) lessons and team building sessions.


Once a week Key Stage 1 pupils will access a vocabulary session while Key Stage 2 pupils will access a Modern Foreign Languages session. Children begin learning French in Year 3 and continue to develop their French throughout Key Stage 2. All children take part in French activities for approximately 30 minutes per week. After-school Languages club allows children further opportunities to develop their knowledge of languages.

Further Curriculum Information

Religious Education

At The Rydal Academy we currently use the Darlington Agreed Syllabus for RE. In accordance with statutory requirements collective worship is held daily.

Parents are entitled to withdraw their children from RE and collective worship and should inform the Headteacher in writing should they wish to do so.

Sex and Relationships Education

The curriculum for sex and relationships education is taught through Social development and Science. Year 5 & 6 children take part in a talk on puberty and relationships which is delivered by our School Nurse. Issues relating to puberty and sexuality are discussed as and when appropriate. Teaching is complementary and supportive to the role of parents who have the right to withdraw their child from these lessons.

Parents are entitled to withdraw their children from Sex Education lessons or puberty talks and should inform the Headteacher in writing should they wish to do so.
*See Sex & Relationships Education Policy