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Curriculum & Learning



What do we want our pupils to learn?


The views of our stakeholders (staff, parents, pupils and Governors) have been used to create six statements that highlight what we want our pupils to learn about before they leave school.  These are:-

  1. Learners are fully involved in the process of looking after themselves.
  2. Learners have high levels of wellbeing and happiness.
  3. Learners are able to communicate their wants and needs to others.
  4. Learners are able to be part of their communities.
  5. Learners are able to self-regulate and manage their emotions.
  6. Learners are prepared for the next stage in their lives and continue to be interested in learning new things.

In addition to this, information from staff teaching different aged pupils has been used to break down these statements to clearly show what we intend the majority of pupils to learn by the end of each Key Stage, from when they arrive in early years until they leave at the end of Year 14.  These statements form the basis of the curriculum.  An example of this is shown below showing the expectations for the end of Key Stage 1:-



Learners are fully involved in the process of looking after themselves.

Learners have high levels of wellbeing and happiness.

Learners are able to communicate their wants and needs to others.

Learners are able to be part of their communities.

Learners are able to self-regulate and manage their emotions.

Learners are prepared for the next stage in their lives and continue to be interested in learning new things.


Through acceptance of guidance from staff with personal care most learners will work towards developing simple independent living skills, that enable them to care for themselves.



Through supported participation in fun learning activities (including physical activities) most learners will work towards developing basic skills in order to keep themselves fit and healthy.

Through encouragement to communicate and exploration of different methods most learners will work towards being able to make their needs known in their preferred way.

Through opportunities to play and interact with both adults and peers most learners will work towards being able to access hobbies and interests in meaningful ways.

Through exploration of puzzles, games and other motivating activities most learners will work towards developing their attention and listening skills and will learn how to learn.

Through exploration of the world and familiarisation with daily routines most learners will work towards being able to understand the concept of ‘future’ (time) and make choices about future events.



Curriculum implementation


How is our curriculum organised in order to achieve our curriculum intent?


Reynalds Cross subjects – making subjects meaningful

Information from the curriculum intent has been used to determine subject headings that address priority areas of learning for Reynalds Cross pupils in a meaningful way.   Subjects are split into ‘Core subjects’ and ‘Explore subjects’.  ‘Core subjects’ cover the basic everyday skills learners need (such as communication, living skills and reading) and need to be taught in a personalised way. Our pupils are exposed to all letter and sounds; and experience reading skills through using the Bug Club phonics scheme.  ‘Explore subjects’ are those that allow pupils to explore the wider world – providing a broad and balanced curriculum through lots of different experiences and opportunities.


The subject headings are shown below along with their definitions and the main National Curriculum Links (additional information about meeting the National Curriculum requirements can be seen section 4). 





Main National

Curriculum Links


‘My communication’ aims to develop skills pupils will need to effectively communicate with others and includes aspects of speaking, listening, reading and writing.


(including Reading)

‘Myself and others’ aims to develop the personal and life skills pupils need to support with looking after themselves and to enable them to form positive relationships with others.

PSHE (Reynalds Cross Curriculum)


‘My learning’ aims to develop functional skills pupils need to live their daily lives and includes mathematical and computing skills.



‘My health’ aim to develop the skills pupils needs to support their own physical, mental and emotional wellbeing and includes areas such as physiotherapy and healthy eating.

Physical Education


‘My community’ aims to develop skills pupils will need to be active members of their own communities and includes personal enrichment, travel training and caring for the environment.

PSHE (citizenship)

‘My world’ aims to help pupils gain an understanding of the word around them and includes opportunities to learn about science, history, geography, different cultures and religions, art and music.

Art and Design /  Design and Technology

Science / Music / History / Geography /Modern Foreign Languages (where appropriate)

‘My future’ aims to develop the skills pupils need for managing transitions and making decisions both during and post school.



‘My special events’ are a range of activities designing to engage pupils in current events and provide opportunities to experience changes in routine.

Religious Education


British values


Curriculum sequencing – ensuring progression through the different subjects

In order to ensure progression in each of the subject areas, the curriculum intent statements have been used to provide more detail about what pupils need to learn in each Key Stage.  This ensures that previous knowledge is built upon and learning is sequenced.  Two examples for the subjects ‘my community’ and ‘my health’ are given below.






Key Stage 1

Key Stage 2


Key Stage 2


Key Stage 3

14-19 Stage


My community

Getting to know new people and places

Play and/or leisure

Getting out and about

Caring for the environment

Travel training

Community involvement

Pupils will be encouraged to explore their new envrionment and develop positive relationships with others (especially following separation from parents/carers).

Pupils will be encouraged to explore their hobbies and interests in meaningful ways.  They will also experience new activities that are considered positive alternatives to work.

Pupils will develop the skills needed to access community facilities.  This may begin with practicing in the classroom setting and then develop into occasional or regular visits to a familiar place.

Pupils will be taught to respect their surroundings.  This begins with their immediate environment and develops into wider community through exploring issues of pollution/ litter and caring for plants.

Pupils will be taught to be safe in the community by developing pedestrian skills, such as walking, staying with staff, traffic awareness, what lights/ signals mean, safe use of pedestrian crossings and exploration of the wider world.

Pupils will become part of the local community through involvement in a variety of activities e.g. using local facilities such as shops, cafes, leisure centres, travel training etc.

My health

Gross and fine motor skills

Keeping fit

Emotions and wellbeing

Healthy living

Getting help

Making positive lifestyle choices

Pupils will be encouraged to start

developing the foundations needed for a healthy body and mind through exploring their own gross and fine motor abilities.

Pupils will develop basic skills in order to keep themselves fit and healthy.  Activities will possibly include games, dance, sensory circuits and swimming.

Pupils will develop an understanding of their own emotions and how to manage them effectively.  Pupils will also explore strategies to support with their mental health and wellbeing.

Pupils will be exposed to a variety of healthy food through play, cooking and structured activities.  Pupils will also be encouraged to make healthy lifestyles choices e.g. diet, exercise, medication, smoking, drugs and alcohol.

Pupils will be able to request help when needed. They will be able to identify people who may be able to help them and access health services, e.g. school nurse, first aid, or community facility such as making a doctor’s appointment.

Pupils will be able to make positive lifestyle choices and this will support them to have high levels of wellbeing and happiness.


Please note that for the purposes of planning Key Stages 1 (years 1/2), 2 lower (years 3/4) and 2 upper (years 5/6) all have a two year cycle.  Key stage 3 (years 7/8/9) has a three year cycle.


These may seem challenging as learners get older as they cover concepts that are more complex, however, these will be carefully differentiated by teachers when planning.  For example ‘travel training’ – could mean catching a bus independently but could also mean teaching early pedestrian skills such as cooperating with a member of staff when moving around school or role playing crossing the road in the classroom.


Curriculum design – a thematic approach to allow everyone to work together


The curriculum has a thematic approach to give some context to learning and to allow the whole school to work on the same topic at the same time.  This gives opportunities for both pupils and staff to work together.  Topics therefore cover relatively basic concepts so they are accessible for younger pupils and are functional for the older pupils.


The topics are grouped into three categories which are linked to a range of National Curriculum subjects.  These are covered during different terms as follows:-

  • Autumn term = creativity (art and design, design and technology and music)
  • Spring term = humanities (history and geography)
  • Summer term = science (elements of chemistry, physics and biology).


KS1 Design and technology


-Technical knowledge

KS1 Music

-Use voices

-Play instruments


-Create sounds

KS1 Geography

-Place knowledge

-Geographical skills and fieldwork

-Human and physical geography

-Locational knowledge

KS1 Biology

-Living things and their habitats


-Animals including humans




The curriculum has been designed so that the majority of the time topics can be used to support learning.  However, there may be some areas of the curriculum where the topic is not relevant.  In these cases discrete lessons, not linked to the topic, will be taught (for example when teaching Sex and Relationships education).


Curriculum coverage – long term planning providing a broad and balanced curriculum

Each subject has a long term plan outlining what is to be taught in each Key Stage and, where relevant, National Curriculum. 


For further information about our curriculum implementation please contact Jacqui Lucas (Assistant Headteacher) via the school office.



Curriculum impact


How do we measure how successful our curriculum is?


What do we need to measure?

What information do we gather?

Achievement of the pupils

  • Results of the targets setting and evaluation process (and the moderation of this process).
  • Information about how well teachers and learning support assistants are supporting pupils through the performance review cycle including observations, learning walks and planning scrutinies.
  • Detail about how well we are working towards the OFSTED framework through OFSTED reports and reports from other advisors.
  • Exploration into how different groups of pupils are progressing (e.g. pupil premium, vulnerable pupils etc.)
  • Comparison of how Reynalds Cross is doing compared to other schools (e.g. developmental walls, destinations data).

Stakeholders views of the curriculum

  • Teaching and learning meetings for staff dedicated to curriculum development.
  • Pupil voice assemblies used to gather information about what the pupils feel about their school and learning.
  • Formal and informal gathering of views from parents (e.g. parents evening discussions, questionnaires).

Additional information

  • General school data (e.g. absence, qualifications, behaviour, destinations, retention, PECs).
  • Input from other professionals (e.g. physiotherapy, speech and language therapy, education psychology, learning disability team).


For further information about our curriculum impact please contact Jacqui Lucas (Assistant Headteacher) via the school office.

Additional information about teaching and learning the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)


The EYFS is based at the 'Green Lane Site'.  It caters for children of Nursery and Reception age (3-5), giving them access to an Early Years style of curriculum, with adaptations to suit different learning needs and styles.  Children attend for 3 hours a day for their nursery year, and full time for their Reception year.


The EYFS department acts as an assessment setting.  While many of the children continue to Reynalds Cross for their Year 1 year,  some are assessed as having learning needs that may be better met in other provisions.


The EYFS focuses on the 'Prime Areas' of; Communication, Physical Development, and Personal Social and Emotional Development.  These areas underpin much of children's early learning and development, and so are evidenced through all learning opportunities in some form.  Then the 'Specific Areas' of Mathematics, Literacy, Understanding the World, and Expressive Arts and Design form additional aspects of the children's learning.


The learning opportunities within the EYFS comprise a mixture of free play opportunities through 'Continuous Provision', and adult directed learning opportunities either 1:1 or in small groups.


Every part of the day is considered a learning experience, with learning opportunities embedded throughout routines such as mealtimes and self-care tasks, as well as within discrete 'lesson' activities.


Children's progress towards 'Early Learning Goals' is assessed using small step target trackers, ensuring that every achievement is valued.


For further information about our EYFS curriculum please contact Liz Massey (EYFS Phase Lead) via the school office.



Additional information about teaching and learning in the 14-19 Stage


The 14-19 Stage was created so students in Key Stages 4 and 5 have the opportunity to spend a full five years working on preparation for life after school and their next destinations.  The students study the same subjects as the rest of school, however, learning is more personalised as each follows their own accredited programme of study (including meeting the National Curriculum statutory requirements for pupils in Key Stage 4).   There is a wide range of activities on offer including opportunities for students to choose their own enrichment options, complete life skills work, use community facilities and experience of range of tasks to support future destinations such as work experience and tasters, college link course and positive alternative to work sessions. 


Achievement in the 14-19 Stage is accredited through a range of Entry 1, 2 and 3 qualifications.  The awarding body we use is ASDAN and we currently offer Personal Progress, Employability and Personal & Social Development.  Work is undertaken in units and students leave with a range of awards, certificates and diplomas.


The diagram below outlines the reasons we work on qualifications with our pupils.


Please see the links below to look at our 14 -19 data.


Please see the links below to see a summary of the qualifications our pupils study.


Please see below for our current ASDAN policies.


For further information about our 14-19 curriculum please contact Lisa Wood (14-19 Phase Lead) via the school office.