5 out of every 6 people in the world are religious. Religion shapes politics, art, culture, lawmaking, economics, and international relations. Lack of understanding about religion can lead to intolerance, hatred, racism, conflict, and war. Therefore, the KS3 RE Curriculum is designed as an essential introduction to comparative religion, ethics and philosophy that equips them with knowledge and skills which are essential for citizens of a globalized age.
By studying these different world views they become more informed citizens that learn to show respect for and build bridges between different beliefs and practices, people of different faiths and life stances, as well as reflecting on their own spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.
It is our hope that the curriculum will play an important and unique role in each student’s education enabling them to understand their spiritual identity, to adhere to British moral values and to learn to play their role in promoting community cohesion and inclusion in our increasingly diverse society
Subject specialism is at the heart of our curriculum and you will see differences in the way that the curriculum is constructed and assessed in different subjects. In GCSE Film Studies and A Level Media essay based assessment as well as key knowledge tests are standardised within the department to ensure they are challenging and reflect national standards. In BTEC Media at KS4 and KS5 assessments are more project based and assessed through BTEC grade descriptors. The stability of our curriculum allows subject expertise to develop over time, and we are careful to provide sufficient time for teachers of the same subject to plan together and collaborate. Our timetable on a Monday has been changed to provide “Golden time” to allow our teachers to collaborate and work on subject development as we believe this collaboration is vital.
In our lessons we expect to see all pupils grappling with the same challenging content, with teachers providing additional support for pupils who need it. Rather than moving on to new content, our higher attainers produce work of greater depth and flair.
Our approach to teaching and learning supports our curriculum by ensuring that lessons build on prior learning and provide sufficient opportunity for guided and independent practice. We use Barak Rosenshine’s Principles of Instruction to develop our teaching practice. At the heart of Rosenshine’s principles is a simple instructional core:
- Demonstration: Teacher presents new information in small steps (I)
- Guided practice with models, prompts and scaffolds (We)
- Independent practice with monitoring and feedback from the teacher (You)
At each point, teachers check understanding of all pupils by asking lots of questions and providing feedback. We use a framework of instructional coaching at Accrington to allow our teachers time and space to develop their practice.
The Rosenshine principles support the implementation of the curriculum by ensuring that pupils regularly recall prior learning. You will often see this at the start of our lessons with our Academy “live in 5 strategy”. When prior learning is committed to long term memory it becomes fluent or ‘automatic’, freeing space in our working memory which can then be used for comprehension, application, and problem solving. We ensure that throughout KS4 and KS5 we are developing and encouraging high levels of literacy and numeracy within the subjects.
Everything from which children learn in school – the taught subject timetable, the approach to spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, the co-curricular provision and the ethos and ‘hidden curriculum’ of the school – are to be seen as part of the school curriculum. Our principle of ‘Education with Character’ is delivered through the curriculum in this broadest sense. We are passionate about ensuring this character education though our “Accrington Aspires” programme of form time/assemblies/Every child matters days and a broad range of extra-curricular activities which ensure we focus on developing the whole child. We always run Media enrichment to expand student’s cultural capital beyond the classroom.
Students are assessed through one essay a week and one homework essay a week for A Level and through GCSE style questions for Film Studies. During NEA tasks students are assessed formatively within rules of assessment and then summatively. With the BTEC courses students also have an option to resubmit coursework where required. We also have two opportunities for full papers twice a year, this allows teachers to focus on formative assessment from lesson to lesson.
We are particularly conscious of the role that literacy and vocabulary plays in unlocking the whole curriculum. Our teachers explicitly teach the meaning of subject-specific language, and we expect lessons to contain challenging reading and writing. Knowledge organisers provide students with key information that they are expected to learn and recall with fluency, enabling them to develop their understanding of key concepts outside of their lessons.
The culmination of our curriculum is that pupils leave our school with the confidence and intelligence to thrive. We know our pupils as individuals which enables us to provide curriculum guidance and careers guidance throughout their time with us. We expect all pupils to leave our school with the grades required to progress to their desired destination, and the character required to flourish once they get there.
By teaching our curriculum well, and delivering education with character, we bring out the best in everyone.
BTEC Media and Film are taught through 5 one hour lessons fortnightly. BTEC Media Level 3 is taught through 18 hours of lesson time and hours outside of lessons dedicated to independent study which students should use to complete NEA tasks or revision. A Level Media is taught through 5 hours a week.
To find out more about our curriculum please contact our Vice Principal in charge of Quality of Education Mrs Christine Williams on Christine.firstname.lastname@example.org or see our Curriculum policy.
Our guided choices booklets also give us more detail on the programme of Guided choices from KS3 into KS5.
Click on Teacher name to read full bio