Curriculum

The school’s curriculum is broad and balanced in order to promote children’s intellectual, physical, personal, social, spiritual, moral and cultural development.  This includes the areas of learning when children begin school and the subjects of the National Curriculum, as they become older, including religious and health education.  Our curriculum is well planned and structured to meet the different abilities and learning needs of all children.  A programme of assemblies and a range of exciting extra curricular activities enrich the curriculum further.  Opportunities are provided to extend children’s experiences through day visits to places of educational interest.

Teaching organisation and methods

Teachers use a variety of strategies and methods to help children to learn.  A blend of whole class, group and individual teaching is used to suit the purpose of the lesson and the needs of the children.  Our teachers use a range of skills including demonstrating, explaining, instructing, questioning, evaluating and providing feedback.

Mixed Ability Classes and Ability Grouping

In the first instance, children are organised into registration classes. In all year groups parallel classes are formed.  In the vast majority of lessons pupils are grouped with in classes, by prior attainment. In Key Stage 2, English and mathematics children are grouped by prior attainment into one of two or three discrete groups: higher attaining, middle attaining and lower attaining children. This enables teachers to meet the different needs of children more fully.  In Key Stage 1 lessons will usually be planned to meet the needs of each attainment group within the class.  In Key Stage 2 where there are parallel classes, children may be split into ability groups in order to meet children’s learning needs more effectively.  Children’s attainment and progress is continually monitored and the composition of the ability groups is reviewed regularly and adjustments made. All classes benefit from the support of Teaching Assistants who work alongside teachers and children.

The Early Years and Foundation Stage (EYFS) Curriculum

The Early Years and Foundation Stage includes children who are of nursery age (3 to 4+), and reception age children who will become of statutory school age during that academic year. Children work towards the Early Learning Goals and their progress is tracked and reported to parents at the end of Reception.

We aim to help children learn through practical experience and play, both in and out of doors.  High priority is given to supporting language development and promoting positive attitudes towards learning.

The Early Years and Foundation Stage Curriculum is planned in seven areas of learning

  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development
  • Physical Development
  • Communication and Language
  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding the World
  • Expressive Arts and Design

The National Curriculum officially starts in Year 1 although in exceptional circumstances, very able children may be taught aspects of the National Curriculum in their Reception year.

The National Curriculum

The National Curriculum sets out what children between the ages of 5 and 16 should be taught.  The National Curriculum for children aged between 5 – 11 years is organised into two key stages:

Key Stage (KS)

Child Ages

Year Groups

KS 1

5 – 7

Y1 and 2

KS 2

7 – 11

Y3, 4, 5 and 6

Within each key stage, the National Curriculum sets out which subjects children should study. At Millbrook, English, mathematics, information and communication technology (ICT) and science are considered the core subjects.  Art, design and technology, geography, history, music, a modern foreign language and physical education are known as the foundation subjects.  Religious education is compulsory in both key stages but because local education authorities decide what is taught, it is not part of the National Curriculum.  The school follows Buckinghamshire’s Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education. This has been established in consultation with representatives of all the main faiths.  In addition children follow a programme of personal, social, health education and citizenship.

French is taught to pupils in Key Stage 2.  Our curriculum is further enhanced by  philosophy to children which cross-curricular develops spelling, listening and critical thinking.