Curriculum

Parent / Carer Curriculum Guide

Dear Parent/ Carer

I hope you will find this information leaflet about your child’s education useful. The strong relationship between home and school is important to ensure that we work together to help your child achieve their full potential.

Curriculum @ Baines

At Baines, we believe that young people thrive and achieve academic success when a strong learning environment and excellent personal development combine to provide the optimum conditions for learning. We want our students to be happy, well rounded young people who can develop positive relationships with people, be confident and have high aspirations for their future, know how to keep themselves safe and develop a healthy lifestyle through nutrition, physical activity and social activity as well as having a rounded view of the world. These provide the foundations for success in studies and in life.

We believe that every child should have access to a broad and balanced curriculum with appropriate coverage of the EBACC subjects (including Geography, History, Languages and Computing) and the opportunity to study a full range of subjects for as long as possible. In the main, students will follow KS3 in years 7, 8 and 9 and KS4 in years 10 and 11. This will ensure they develop an appreciation for all subjects and explore their strengths fully before selecting, narrowing their education and specialising more in KS4.

Below are the curriculum strands at Baines to ensure they receive a full and balanced curriculum which combines an academic curriculum with the aspects of personal development that will develop knowledge, skills and education for life. A small number of students may follow a more personalised curriculum to meet specific needs.

  
Academic EducationAll aspects of the curriculum that leads to increased knowledge, understanding and development of new skills.
The subjects form the core of the Academic Curriculum (a broad range of subjects are studied and subjects are encouraged to contitune to study the EBACC subjects) and the qualifications studied fit into this aspect of our education.
In addition to the subjects and qualifications are literacy and numeracy as these are fundamental life skills that students will need throughout their life
Physical, Nutritional, Relationship, Mental & Emotional Health EducationA healthy mind and body can prevent illness and disease in later life, therefore, it is important to develop good habits while young.
We know physical activity releases positive hormones that improve our mental and emotional health and make us feel positive as well as resilient.
Making healthy food choices can lead to a sense of well-being, self confidence and increased concentration levels.
Students will learn about how the body works, how to stay healthy, about how food can contribute to a healthy lifestyle and how to develop a positive mind-set.
They will learn an age-appropriate understanding of healthy relationships and sex education. They will lean these through some of the subjects but also through form time, assemblies, Life Skills and through extra-curricular opportunities
Social, Moral, Spiritual & Cultural EducationDeveloping the social, moral, spiritual and cultural skills where learners appreciate differences and understand the society in which we live will help them to live fulfilling lives as adults. At Baines it is very important that students learn about cultural diversity and respect for cultural and individual differences. At Baines we help our students to develop positive social activity through relationships with peers and the Baines wider community. They will learn about being a responsible, respectful and active citizen, have an understanding of the world we live in with respect and tolerance for individuals and their views, feelings and faiths. We want students to have an understanding about British Values and to appreciate the rich cultures on our society, We help our students to develop their character and values. We are an inclusive school who promote equality of opportunity so we can all thrive together. Students will also lean about the difference between right and wrong, including the laws and consequences. Students will learn through their Life skills lessons, form time, assemblies, academic lessons, extra-curricular activities and though the ethos and values we have in school that we model every day at Baines School
Safety EducationIt is important that students know how to keep themselves safe both in and out of school. This includes age-appropriate understanding of safe practice on the internet and use of social media, safe use of substances and safe practice decisions and encounters they will come across in everyday life. They will learn about safety such as in physical activity, the workshop, the kitchen, transport and about keeping themselves safe in the community. Students will learn this through Life Skills, academic lessons, form time, assemblies, extra-curricular activities and following our code of conduct and safe guarding advice.
Leadership, Organisation, Resilience, Initiative, Communication Education (LORIC) We recognise that the components of LORIC are valuable skills that are needed in all aspects of life. The National Careers Service have identified these to be in to the top ten soft skills that employers look for. We want all of our students to be successful so aim to develop these to complement the other areas of our curriculum. Students will learn these in form time and have opportunity to enhance and develop them further through Life Skills lessons, academic lessons, House activities and extra-curricular activities.
Careers EducationIt is important that our students have high aspirations for their lives beyond Baines School. We develop thei understanding of careers and the skills, personal attributes and qualifications they require to achieve their dreams and their next stage in their education. They will experience these through form time activities, Life Skills, careers interviews, events and conventions, through their academic subjects and extra-curricular opportunities. It is our vision that we know were every one of our students progressed to after leaving school. We have a group of Former Pupils who visit the school and talk about their lives and careers after they left Baines School, this provides a further enhancement.

Over the last two years we have worked hard to develop our curriculum at Baines School. This started with an external review of our curriculum to look at the subjects on offer, compare the hours studied against other school and national recommendations and to help us have an understanding about the learning experience of the students, including their personal development.

Since then we have maintained our 3-year KS3 and 2-year KS4 programme because this is how the government designed and intended the curriculum to be structured and we believe this is the best for the students. This ensures that students develop a strong foundation in many subjects developing the knowledge and skills that underpin the subjects and will support them in study at KS4 and beyond. It also ensures that the students maintain a broad range of subjects where they have the time to develop a love of the subject and master those core skills before making choices about which subjects to specialise in further at KS4. Almost all students will follow a full curriculum at KS3. The students study the core subjects, mathematics, English, science, physical education, religion, ethics and philosophy and life skills. They are taught the EBACC subjects including computing, geography, history and a modern foreign language.

Students all study French as an MFL language in Year 7 and those who have shown a particular flair in French will also study Spanish in Year 8. The other students continue to study French and consolidate and extend their skills in the one foreign language which deepens their level of understanding, with the hope that they may continue to study a language at KS4. All students are educated in a range of creative subjects including art and music. At KS3 all students follow a carousel for the design technology subjects and they have modules in a range of different design disciplines including catering, product design, graphics and resistant materials. These subjects provide a strong grounding for life as well as GCSE subjects.
Our KS4 curriculum has been broadened and we offer a wider number of subjects than previously. We feel that these subjects meet the needs of our students and we review the subjects offered every year to ensure we can meet the learning needs of our students. All of our KS4 subjects can lead to at least one further course that is offered by our largest local Further Education providers, so each has a direct career pathway. We will always offer the traditional academic subjects and ensure students have the opportunity to follow the EBACC route, but we recognise that this is not for everyone so we have a number of creative and vocational subjects to ensure that there is a balanced offer for our students. We provide support to ensure that they are on a suitable combination of subjects for their future aspirations, interests and ability.
Parents and carers play a crucial role in helping the young people achieving success in their education. To help your child achieve their full potential we hope you will support in the following ways:
1. Ensure that your child eats healthy food, has around 8 hours sleep per night and a quiet place to study
2. Students need the basic equipment including pens, pencil, ruler, rubber, highlighter, scientific calculator, notepad and a reading book. It is fantastic if they have access to a computer and the internet but not compulsory as students can use the school computers in the ILC for homework
3. Please take an interest in their work, look at the work in their books and check homework
4. Check Class Charts for homework, reward and behaviour points, sign their planner and use the planner to communicate with school
5. Attend consultation evenings so you can discuss your child’s progress with teachers
6. Encourage a love of reading and talk about vocabulary, literacy and key words as well as books
7. Encourage resilience and positivity. Students must learn that getting questions wrong is part of a development process and we learn a lot from mistakes, it makes us stronger and that everyone can achieve success with effort
8. Encourage your child to take part in extra-curricular activities and support by attending events
9. Revision – encourage and ensure your child revises for examinations
10. Keep in touch – any concerns, please do let us know
Below are some of our teaching and learning priorities, please discuss them with your child:
1. Attendance and Punctuality – research shows that students who have high attendance (above 95%) tend to achieve higher grades in their examinations. If students are not in lessons, they are not learning. This year we expect students to catch up any work they have missed in lessons. As Class Charts records homework, then we also expect students to complete the homework that was set when they were absent. Students will need to see the teachers to find out what they have missed. Punctuality is important in life and we try to develop strong routines for student immediately. Being on time minimises any disruption to learning.
2. No hands up approach to questioning – in order to make sure all students in the class are thinking of the answer to questions, in most circumstances we target questioning to students in lessons, rather than just asking the ones who think they know the answer to put their hands up.
3. Presentation matters – a well-organised book demonstrates pride and a positive attitude to learning. It ensures the workbook can be used for revision at a later date.
4. Quality and quantity of work – when you look in your child’s books, what does it tell you about their work ethic? Is there evidence of extended writing or work that shows sustained effort over a period of time? Is your child proud of the work they are doing? Can you see how teacher feedback informs the student on What Went Well and Even Better If? (WWW / EBI)
5. Does your child have a strong work ethic? Do they complete homework and want it to be of high quality? This year we are encouraging greater independent learning skills where we want students to take responsibility for their learning. We hope they will develop resilience so that they do not give up and they thrive with new and difficult challenges. It does not matter if they do not get things right straight away but to keep trying and they will master it eventually.
6. Does your child have high aspirations for themselves? Do they have any ideas for their future career or life? We hope to work with them so that they can ‘Be the best they can be’ and achieve their full potential. We hope to help them to achieve their dream and that they aim high!
7. Discuss the wider personal development aspects of their education with them. It is important that they learn about being healthy, staying safe, developing respectful relationships, understanding cultural differences and having a career plan for the future.
8. To help to prepare for the examinations in Year 11, we need to develop learning and writing stamina. Some students find it hard to concentrate and work independently. We will be working hard this year to develop concentration and stamina through structured independent silent working.
9. Research shows that those who achieve their target grades are students who have mastered the ability to store learning in their long term memory, make connections between learning and then be able to recall their learning at a later date. To help with this we are building memory and retrieval activities into lessons.
10. A main focus this year will be RESPECT. We want students to respect themselves and their future lives, respect their families, develop respectful relationships with friends and other members of the community, respect the school and their education, respect the school buildings and equipment and finally, respect for the community and society.
11. Have fun! Help them to enjoy all the extra-curricular opportunities that they have the opportunities for.

Nil Sine Labore – Nothing Without Effort!

Downloadable version

If parents/carers require further information on our curriculum, please contact Mr. McGrath – mmg@baines.lancs.sch.uk