THE FUTURA CURRICULUM
We inspire our children's learning through a creative curriculum, ensuring our pupils experience a wide breadth of study and have, by the end of each key stage, long-term memory of an ambitious body of procedural and semantic knowledge. Our progressive curriculum, from 3-19 years ensures that children have the requisite knowledge to proceed to their next year of study, including transition to secondary school.
Our curriculum is ambitious, meeting and often exceeding the national curriculum, for all and strives to address inclusion and disadvantage in its intent and implementation. For more information of the intent, implementation and impact of each curriculum area, please read the Futura curriculum (Pdf) and the Futura curriculum principles (Pdf)
Within each subject children are not 'doing' History or Science, instead they are being Historians and Scientists and therefore learn and practise the skills on this concept from Nursery all the way through to Year Six. Throughout their learning journey, children are given the opportunity to meet local professionals, go on visits and engage in practical experiences in their classrooms so that they can really understand what it is like to be an Athlete, Geographer, Artist or any other state of being. These experiences are shared with parents and our community through performances, galleries and on our online platform, Class Dojo.
The Primary Curriculum
Learning is a change to long-term memory.
Our aims are to ensure that our pupils experience a wide breadth of study and have, by the end of each key stage, long-term memory of an ambitious body of procedural and semantic knowledge.
Our scheme distinguishes between subject topics and threshold concepts. Subject topics are the specific aspects of subjects that are studied.
Threshold concepts tie together the subject topics into meaningful schema. The same concepts are explored in a wide breadth of topics. Through this ‘forwards-and-backwards engineering’ of the Futura curriculum, pupils return to the same concepts over and over, and gradually build understanding of them.
For each of the threshold concepts, the Futura curriculum is split into 3 phases, KS1, lower juniors and upper juniors (each of which includes the procedural and semantic knowledge pupils need to understand the threshold concepts) that provide a progression model. Within each phase, pupils gradually progress in their procedural fluency and semantic strength through three cognitive domains: basic, advancing and deep. The goal is for pupils is to display sustained mastery at the advancing stage of understanding by the end of each phase and for the most able to have a greater depth of understanding at the deep stage. The timescale for sustained mastery or greater depth is, therefore, two years of study. This is based on the research of Sweller, Kirschner and Rosenshine who argue for direct instruction in the early stages of learning and discovery-based approaches later. We use direct instruction in the basic domain and problem-based discovery in the deep domain. This is called the reversal effect.
In the core subjects (English and Maths) and PSHE the timescale for sustained mastery or greater depth is one year of study.
Cognitive science tells us that working memory is limited and that cognitive load is too high if pupils are rushed through content. This limits the acquisition of long-term memory. Cognitive science also tells us that in order for pupils to become creative thinkers, or have a greater depth of understanding, they must first master the basics, which takes time.
All supporting material will focus on the key question ‘what do we want pupils to know and remember at the end of this unit’. In addition to the scheme of learning, the associated supporting resources will include:
Lesson plans and resources
A knowledge organiser for each unit
Pre unit subject knowledge support videos for teachers
Standardised end of unit assessments
A Futura retrieval game for each year group covering all subjects.
At Four Acres, curriculum encompasses the whole experience that our learners have throughout their time with us. In addition to the National Curriculum we are proud to offer our children exciting playtimes through the OPAL approach and a broad range of extra-curricular activities to develop children's interests and strengths.
If you require further information about our curriculum then please get in contact with us.