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LIVE- Curriculum Statement Policy

Co-op Academy Glebe

Curriculum Statement

At Co-op Academy Glebe the curriculum is designed to: recognise children’s prior learning, provide first hand learning experiences, allow the children to develop interpersonal skills, build resilience and become creative, critical thinkers.’

At Glebe Academy we plan a curriculum which reflects our 6 school values: Togetherness, Hunger to learn, Resilience, Inspiring Individuals, Valuing all and Excel & Enjoy - these form our THRIVE culture and which incorporates high performing experiences where children are engaged and challenged and developed edOur

Curriculum Pillars




Basic Principles

Core Learning

Glebe Curriculum….the Glebe-ified bits

Skills for Life

Positive Lifestyles

Depth of Learning

Educationally, physically, socially and emotionally.


Our curriculum focuses on our six Curriculum Pillars:

Basic Principles

Our curriculum is designed to:

  • Develop children’s curiosity and encourage a hunger for new learning, throughout their lives, creating independent and curious learners.
  • To enable pupils to study and learn from the past whilst vitally preparing pupils for their future.
  • Building a solid foundation, not only for a child’s school career, but also for life in the future as responsible, active citizens.
  • Creating a collection of memorable learning experiences and broadening horizons, both within the classroom and in the wider environment.
  • Engage children in an exciting curriculum that considers local, global and community links
  • Offering an exciting first opportunity to explore different curriculum subjects.
  • Gaining knowledge and skills which can be applied in a variety of contexts
  • Deepen children’s understanding of other cultures, communities and faiths and promoting Fundamental British Values.
  • Broadening the curriculum offer beyond the school day through out of hours learning and enrichment opportunities, including in holiday periods
  • Equity of ensuring every child has equal access to the curriculum through a mastery based approach but also to develop children’s understanding of equality and diversity.
  • Inclusion and early intervention: The low starting points of many of our children mean the importance of Early Interventions and clear next step learning at the appropriate level is crucial
  • Ensure pupils make progress through the curriculum, accessing knowledge and skills in a sequential way. This means that teachers are fully aware of the whole school curriculum and build in regular opportunities to revisit concepts and knowledge to help pupils to commit learning to long term memory and also address any missed learning.
  • Meet the needs of our pupils and our community which brings together children from different backgrounds and increasingly from different countries around the world. Ensuring that these wide-ranging cultural experiences enrich our school community.
  • Ensure a clear career based education with links with industry and the world of work essential for our pupils. As the local area is identified as one of high deprivation and with high levels of unemployment we are passionate about improving life chances and creating opportunities outside of their usual experiences and environment.
  • Developing English language and vocabulary is a high priority, including pupils whose first language is non-English. Therefore language, literature and vocabulary sit at the heart of our curriculum. We take every opportunity to broaden our pupils’ language skills. 
  • Develop pupils’ leadership qualities to prepare pupils to become confident young people
  • Celebrates, learns from and includes contextual strengths of our community, and strong cultural heritage so that pupils are proud of their local area and understand the significance of the history and how this has shaped the present.
  • Work with parents and families as this engagement is fundamental to improving life chances and building the strong relationships that enable us to work in partnership.
  • Strong links with community organisations ensure that we provide our pupils with increasingly varied opportunities and experiences which directly support their learning and development. 


Core Learning

The breadth and depth of study, including all statutory requirements; ensuring a broad and balanced curriculum offer is crucial. We strongly believe that by ensuring our curriculum offer is wide and varied, we can develop children who are well prepared for future challenges.  

Curriculum Sequencing: We use a subject specific approach making links to quality texts and making cross some curricular links where appropriate to embed knowledge and skills further and enable pupils to make connections within their learning. In the Early Years, a thematic based approach is taken as our children link their learning experiences together through themes such as ‘Here there and Everywhere’ and ‘African Safari’. To commit knowledge to long term memory requires time and repetition, with spaces between. We have identified key strands in each curriculum area which are revisited often throughout school, with spacing in between.  To ensure that key concepts are embedded in long-term memory, these concepts are repeated over time and new learning builds upon prior learning. For example, the people, landscape, culture and industry of Stoke on Trent are re-visited and developed through historical and geographical study throughout the year groups; from the experience of the pupils of the original Glebe School in year one, through to the huge ‘Lidice Lives’ campaign supported by the Stoke on Trent mining community in Year six.  This continuous coverage allows previous knowledge and skills to be developed in a way that is both purposeful and personal to the pupils, whilst ingraining a sense of community and belonging to their local area. Learning content in different year groups that relates to a similar theme (e.g. protecting the environment) demonstrates an increasing degree of challenge, and progression.  Timetable structure maximises the amount of time that children spend immersed in their learning experiences, with larger blocks of time in the afternoon being devoted to the foundation subjects. Each subject has a knowledge and skills progression grid ensuring the curriculum is appropriately sequenced. This shows the WHAT and WHEN for each subject.

Our staff receive regular CPD to develop their pedagogical approaches and ensure that they have the necessary knowledge and skills to provide high quality lessons and learning opportunities.  By planning for specific vocabulary progression across all subject areas, our pupils learn the vocabulary needed to understand increasingly complex key concepts and build their confidence in using the correct terminology across all subject areas.

Pedagogy: Lessons are carefully structured to ensure that real learning is taking place and new knowledge is embedded in children’s long term memory. Lessons begin with an opportunity to revisit previous learning using a Flashback approach; this is followed by new knowledge and concepts which are introduced in small scaffolded steps. Children are provided with lots of opportunities to practise what they have learnt, using shared models and examples.

Children’s independent learning is then scaffolded as they demonstrate their application of new knowledge and skills. As children work, teachers routinely check understanding and give meaningful feedback to move learning forward. This is mostly immediate feedback to ensure that misconceptions are addressed straight away and pupils are supported in understanding their errors or ways to make improvements. 

Learning Challenge: This is built around the principle of greater learner involvement in their work. It requires deep thinking and encourages learners to work using a question as the starting point.

In designing the curriculum teachers and learners are using a learning challenge, expressed as a question, as the starting point.

Steps to success ensure pupils are clear in the way in which learning and skills build in order to be secure, supported but also with clear opportunities to be challenged and practice and master.  

Our timetable is structured to maximise the amount of time that children spend immersed in their learning experiences, with larger blocks of time in the afternoon being devoted to the foundation subjects. Our subjects are taught discreetly in Key Stage One and Two so that children are clear about the knowledge and skills they are learning and which area of the curriculum they are learning about. In the Early Years, a topic based approach is taken as our children link their learning experiences together through themes such as ‘Here there and Everywhere’ and ‘African Safari’

Inclusion: We have a broad, balanced and ambitious curriculum for all learners. Adaptive teaching strategies and targeted learning enables all pupils to engage with the curriculum with a drive on progress for all.

Children acquire and practise key skills in English and Maths including phonics, spelling, reading and comprehension grammar, punctuation, handwriting, arithmetic, timetables etc. there is an emphasis on the cross curricular use of these skills.

The importance of reading and phonics at Co-op Academy Glebe: Reading is a fundamental part of everything we do at Glebe. Every opportunity is taken to develop pupils’ reading skills and their love of reading. Children are exposed to high quality texts across the curriculum and reading skills are taught explicitly in all year groups. Alongside the skills of decoding and comprehension, book talk encourages children to think as a reader and discuss their preferences, likes and dislikes. Reading for pleasure is a cornerstone of our approach. The high profile of reading in school is further enhanced by whole school Reading Rocks sessions to develop a range of reading skills. At Glebe we ensure that pupils have lots of opportunities to read in lots of different contexts. We continually strive to promote a love of reading through all curriculum areas.

Pupils have two books – a Reading book and a Library book which is a book they chose to read for pleasure in addition to their reading development books. Guided reading sessions are carefully planned to build reading skills over time and take place daily across the whole school. English lessons are centred around rich texts chosen for the quality of language and their links to topics. Pupils explore text structures, features and language and learn to replicate these within their own writing.

Our pupils develop their speaking, listening and presenting skills further; planning and delivering presentations, reading aloud and performing poetry ensure that our pupils develop skills and confidence through a progressive and supportive framework.

Reading across the Curriculum: We believe in using the power of narrative to engage our children fully in their learning and encourage them to take a personal interest in the topics they study. We harness the many benefits of storytelling by using this approach to introduce new topics to our children, promoting opportunities for empathy, connection and context. We believe in the powerful use of narrative across subjects to capture children’s attention and interest in a meaningful way.

Knowledge and Understanding of the World: Children have an extended period of time to explore, acquire, develop and apply knowledge and skills in Science, History, Geography, Computing and RE.

  • The curriculum has been designed to ensure exposure to cultural capital across the subject areas accessible within the curriculum but also further supported through a range of extra-curricular opportunities

MfL: Our MFL curriculum is designed to progressively develop children’s skills in Spanish, through regular taught lessons. Children progressively acquire, use and apply a growing bank of vocabulary organised around topics. All of these approaches help to equip our children with the skills to be confident global citizens.

Creative Learning: Children develop and apply knowledge and skills in order to produce great products, shows or events in Music, Art, Design Technology and Drama.

Glebe Curriculum….the Glebe-ified bits 

Our GLEBE CURRICULUM has other elements which we have introduced to support children at OUR school. These elements of the curriculum have been introduced to address gaps in experiences of our children which are unique to our school and children in the Fenton/Stoke on Trent area. Crucially, this aspect of the curriculum (along with extra-curricular activities) is designed for personal/ character development.

Our school curriculum includes:

Forest School and Outdoor Learning–This supports children in the development of valuable such as collaboration, resourcefulness, resilience, problem solving, adaptability, determination and purposefulness. In an area where many of our families do not have gardens and with a lack of safe places to play in the local area utilising our grounds for learning across the curriculum, for play, and exploring nature is a vital part of our curriculum offer.

Values Based Learning

Each subject leader ensures that there is appropriate curriculum coverage of SMSC and Fundamental British Values, within their subjects. We use this values based learning which is a rolling programme of focus values which are introduced in assemblies, discussed in class and promoted through activities and actions. SMSC and Fundamental British Values promoted across school through curriculum.

Nurture principles and provision within break/lunch times to support children with SEMH issues; this is an important aspect of our curriculum offer and underpins our approaches.

Locality Learning: A focus within all subject areas on deepening pupils' understanding of other people and the environment, within the school, their locality of Fenton and Stoke on Trent and the wider world. We underpin aspects of our curriculum with strong connections to community, locality and heritage.

We have a list of 101 experiences which we will offer children during their time at our school. This offers activities and experiences from EYFS to Y6.

Parental / community events: Learning together sessions for parents, parent workshops, Family Learning, supporting local events; enrichment opportunities on and off site and specific events such as those raising awareness or fundraising, e.g. in the past we have also organised intergenerational projects such as visiting local care homes. Parents are regularly invited into school to ensure that they are fully involved in their child’s learning and development. For example, parents are welcomed into school to celebrate their child’s learning at weekly celebration sessions and class assemblies. This is an opportunity to develop pupils’ speaking, listening and presenting skills as they share what they have learnt.

Our family learning workshops are very well attended and strengthen the links between home and school whilst supporting parents with their child’s education. Other events include assemblies, music concerts, performances and local community projects and events. Specific workshops such as phonics, ensure that our parents have access to the help and support they need to play a full role in educating their children. Parents are also supported through our online provision; videos, information and guidance are provided to support curriculum development. 

Visits and Visitors: We recognise that children’s learning is enhanced by different experiences so our curriculum is enhanced by a wide range of educational visits used to motivate, engage and deepen learning which improves retention.

Regular visitors give the children another perspective on values, attitudes, learning and understanding. These include charities, people from different professions and the community.

Skills for Life

  • Children develop skills to become:

Independent Enquirers; Team Workers; Reflective Learners; Effective Participators; Resourceful Thinkers; Self Managers

  • We teach children to have good manners, be able to self- regulate emotions, form positive relationships and be able to manage the unexpected challenges of life. This links directly to Spiritual, Moral, Social & Cultural development.

Pupils’ Personal Development: We have prioritised moral development throughout our curriculum. Our PSHE curriculum follows the SCARF Coram scheme of learning, covering 6 key units across the school year, these being 'Me and My Relationships, Valuing Difference, Keeping Myself Safe, Rights & Responsibilities, Being My Best and Growing & Changing.  This core scheme of learning is then enhanced and made more pertinent to our pupils at Glebe through our wider enhancement. Classes have a weekly focus on local issues around Safety, Wellbeing and PSHE through the Staffordshire Safe and Sound network, for example identifying dangers in local parks, rail safety awareness in the area etc.  All our students are involved with The School Council where pupils make their voices heard and are able to discuss and debate school-based topics and issues, such as litter around school and locally, supporting local charities etc. Personal development is also pivotal across the curriculum, for example in geography children learn about climate change and how sustainability and recycling is vital to respect and protect the world they live in, including the impact of food and clothing production.  This is developed further in Design and Technology learning in Upper KS2, when the children develop menus using sustainable and fair-trade ingredients and recycle clothing in their textiles unit of work.  Throughout their school life, children learn about significant historical events that have influenced both the local community and wider world.  For example, through their learning of World War Two, the children learn about the experience of various communities affected by the holocaust and how this tragedy reinforces the importance of mutual respect and tolerance and celebration of diversity.  In addition, key events, such as Black History Month, are studied whole school, with each year group having a specific focus (e.g. The Windrush Generation, the suffrage movement etc.), during which they are encouraged to think reflectively and critically about how these events help them to live moral and respectful lives.  

Pupils also have opportunities to take part in Careers and aspirational related learning.  This takes place through the school through discrete events (such as visits from professionals and tradespeople from a variety of sectors) and is also woven throughout learning through questioning about the purpose of their learning to roles and responsibilities within school.  

Enterprise and Careers:

As part of our commitment to creating lifelong learners with the skills and aspirations to engage in their community and the world of work we focus on developing pupils' understanding of the world of work, careers and using the curriculum to enhance employability skills for the future. Our Careers Related Learning (CRL) Programme introduces all pupils to the world of work from EYFS through to year six and brings with it a wealth of inspirational opportunities for the children to experience a range of careers and jobs through: employer encounters, off site employer visits, careers weeks, our junior leadership team initiative, enterprise opportunities and focused workshops.  Career conversations and links are made throughout the curriculum so children can see ‘where this learning can lead me’ and their Careers Related learning journey books allows them to reflect on and recall the CRL opportunities they have had on a personal level.    

As part of the school science curriculum, each class engages in a Skype a Scientist session. This opportunity is designed to promote careers in science and demonstrate the great diversity within science.

As part of our commitment to enhancing the visibility of science careers for all, we also provide an opportunity for engagement in a Year 6 STEM project. This involves the designing aspects of an electric car and then having the chance to race it.

Co-op Academy Glebe has a positive relationship with the JCB academy, who promote women in STEM. As part of this link, our Year 6 girls are provided with time at the JCB academy to engage in STEM activities, which all link directly to possible JCB careers.

Game of Actual Life: pupils in Key Stage 2 have access to a cross curricular life skills programme where the learners experience the decisions and finances of young adults.

Beyond the school day: In addition to the core curriculum delivered to all learners, an extensive extracurricular programme of clubs, interventions and participatory opportunities is also available for pupils. Extra-curricular activities are selected for their contribution to pupils’ development within out 6 values. While the majority of these opportunities are available for any pupil to access, some will be by referral or selection. A number of the extra-curricular opportunities available are also open to families and the community, under our work alongside The Hubb Foundation which also extends to each holiday period. Our offer includes: traditional sports such as football, multi skills, hockey, cricket and alternative sports such as dodgeball, archery, Bubble Football, in addition to sports clubs, other clubs eg STEM club, Choir, Art and Craft

Technology: We make full use of the range of technology available to us to inspire and support our children’s learning. Our laptops are used to develop children’s computing skills and enhance learning throughout the curriculum. We also use our devices as a powerful tool to gather individual and whole class feedback in real time, supporting our assessment for learning. Our intervention programmes also involve the use of IT to deliver programmes such as SHINE, and Times Table Rock Stars. Strong links with local secondary schools; children in KS2 attend experience days annually. Our staff are forging links with high school staff to enhance our curriculum offer.

Speaking and listening: Speaking and listening is central to the curriculum and is developed from EYFS throughout our school, across the curriculum. We nurture children’s speaking and listening skills through a variety of approaches: exploratory play, story time, hot-seating, PSHE sessions and through collaborative learning. We develop these skills so that our children are capable of expressing their own ideas clearly and confidently, in a safe and supportive environment, in all aspects and areas of their school life and into their future.

Subject specific vocabulary is embedded across the curriculum, through teacher modelling, in context. Contextual learning helps children to understand new words and supports them in including them in their work. This model is reflected in shared reading sessions, where children are given the chance to explore unfamiliar vocabulary and expand their knowledge of words. We are keen to model the correct grammar in speech and encourage children to reflect this in their use of spoken and written language. Children are given the chance to orally rehearse ideas for writing regularly and speak and perform for different audiences including their peers, visitors and parents.

Positive Lifestyles

  • Children develop positive attitudes to healthy living, caring for the environment and securing positive mental and physical health.
  • It includes PE, PSHE, Sex and Relationship Education, Outdoor Learning, Leadership Opportunities

This links directly to Spiritual, Moral, Social & Cultural development and is delivered through our SCARF programme alongside a more responsive thread which is able to react to current affairs or topics which may be significant for pupils.

Active lifestyles: Involvement in events and competitions both intra and inter in an exceptional amount of sporting competition– inter and intra.

SMARTMile: pupils also have opportunities to undertake additional physical activity – this is linked to whole school themes or events.

Support positive wellbeing and mental health: In addition to the clear curriculum focus interventions are delivered for children with high social / emotional needs or diagnosed mental health issues. Children at Glebe are taught to recognise the importance of Wellbeing on a regular basis.  Not only is this a key feature of our PSHE curriculum, but it is further embedded through our weekly sessions with the Staffordshire Safe and Sound network, giving pupils opportunities to explore specific topics with local experts such as local safety (local parks, rail tracks etc), internet safety,  Mindfulness strategies, and dealing with unsafe feelings. 

Our Glebe curriculum for PSHE ensures pupils are taught about money from an early age and this understanding develops through a progression across all year groups, ensuring that our students develop a responsible attitude towards their own economic well being. 

Pupil Voice and junior leadership: An active school council which is democratically voted in by their peers leads and develops initiative in school alongside school leaders and governors. Pupils in our Academy have the opportunity to build the leadership skills they will need for the wider world by taking part in a range of leadership roles (including communication champions, eco warriors, curriculum challengers, reading ambassadors, sports leaders, wellbeing champions and prefects; all offering valuable experiences to develop communication, co-operation leadership, and responsibility. 

Depth of Learning

  • Curriculum has been designed to be broad and balanced so children have opportunities to discover what they enjoy and what they are good at.
  • However, we also strongly believe children learn best when there is a shift from short term memory to long term memory. For this reason, our curriculum includes opportunities to develop subject experts in each subject area by ensuring depth of learning.
  • Knowledge and Information are not the same thing. Learning happens when pieces of separate information are connected in a meaningful way to create knowledge AND this knowledge must be committed to long term memory before we can say something has been learned (as opposed to being taught or experienced). Children develop a range of subject specific skills but when possible curriculum links are developed, explore and applied across the whole curriculum and apply knowledge and skills across the curriculum when appropriate, 

Each subject leader has written a stranded curriculum split into substantive and disciplinary knowledge to ensure the curriculum is appropriately sequenced. This shows the WHAT and WHEN for each subject. By identifying strands and concepts for each subject area, which are re-visited through different content throughout school, we ensure learning ‘sticks’ and is committed to long term memory through repetition. This stranded approach also enables and encourages children to ‘compartmentalise’ learning into key concepts, which makes them more likely to make links to previous areas of study.

Assessment: We use Point in Time Assessments (PITA) to assess pupil’s attainment and progress using this linear method of tracking attainment and progress. This happens at 4 points across the year for Reading, Writing and Maths including phonics assessments for those pupils still accessing RWI Phonics programme. Learning is assessed against the criteria taught to date and then placed on a point range. Teachers stating whether pupils are 'on track' to meet expectations by the end of the year.

Assessment for foundation subjects starts with the robustness of the curriculum design clearly outlining the key knowledge that the children need to know over the course of a specific unit of study.  The planning, teaching and retention of this knowledge is then assessed in a four-stage monitoring process by subject leaders via a sample on a termly basis. The sample is based on key demographics (a child: working at expected standard; working towards expected standard; working at a greater depth, with English as an additional language, with SEND, registered as pupil premium and who is a persistent absentee).  Using this sample the four stages of assessment using this sample are: book/evidence scrutiny (against agreed medium term planning), pupil voice, comparison and assessing effectiveness of units.  The triangulation of a robust curriculum, high quality teaching and ‘overlearning’ and regular assessment and monitoring cycle quality assured foundation subjects without the need for individualised data from class teachers.


The academy is committed to ensuring there is a broad and balanced curriculum which is expertly delivered to ensure a child’s entire school experience enables them to develop a deep body of knowledge which will see them through to further study, work and a successful adult life in whatever they choose.  The curriculum is designed to: recognise children’s prior learning, provide first hand learning experiences, allow the children to develop interpersonal skills, build resilience and become creative, critical thinkers with high aspirations for their future and an important thirst for new experiences and knowledge. Our strong focus on our locality and heritage also develops an understanding of the history of our local area, its people and instils a sense of pride.

Children leave the Academy with a sense of belonging to a tightly knit community where they have the confidence and skills to make decisions, self-evaluate, make connections and become lifelong learners and with positive attitudes about themselves, to others and to the communities they contribute to.

They recognise themselves as a unique individual and celebrate and welcome differences within our school and the community. Their ability to learn is underpinned by the teaching of basic skills, knowledge, concepts and values.

School leaders at all levels, including subject leaders and governors are all integral drivers to ensure impact; regularly monitoring curriculum provision through learning walks, lesson drop ins, work scrutinises and by talking to children and measuring the impact of the ‘daily diet’ of our children. Data analysis also forms an important part of the picture. For core subjects teachers make judgements about pupil achievement and foundation subjects are assessed and quality assured by subject leaders through a robust assessment and monitoring cycle on a termly basis.  The impact and measure of this is to ensure children not only acquire the appropriate age related knowledge linked to the curriculum but also skills which equip them to progress from their starting points.  In shaping our curriculum this way, progress can be measured and evidenced for all children, regardless of their starting points or specific needs.

We teach our children to ensure we alter their long term memories and we define progress as knowing and remembering more and developing both skills and subject knowledge hand in hand.  

Pupils are confident in discussing what they have learnt and how they have developed new knowledge and skills, identifying where they have linked new knowledge to existing knowledge and in using a range of strategies to support their learning. They also have an understanding of how they learn and develop and how they can develop learning behaviours.

Whilst we pride ourselves on ensuring pupils make outstanding progress during their time with us and attainment above their peers nationally at the end of Year 6 we ensure that this is achieved by a curriculum where their creativity is embraced and fostered and ensuring children socially, creatively, physically and emotionally thrive.

Children take pride in their work and realise their potential to achieve success in the world of work; setting high expectations for themselves and knowing how to achieve their goals through working towards specific targets.

When our children leave us, as well as being ready for a KS3 curriculum, they have a wealth of transferable skills which have been developed throughout their time at primary school in an inclusive and nurturing environment.