The Ridge Junior School

The Ridge Junior School

Life at The Ridge Junior School Life at The Ridge Junior School Life at The Ridge Junior School Life at The Ridge Junior School Life at The Ridge Junior School Life at The Ridge Junior School Life at The Ridge Junior School
"A school family, engaged, aspiring and learning together"

Our Curriculum

School Curriculum and Vision Statement

(September 2019 – to be reviewed – July 2020)

Helping learners to become their ‘best selves’.

Ready to learn  - meeting fundamental needs

Effective learning cannot take place unless basic needs are met.

We work in partnership with Parents/Carers and other stakeholders to help ensure that our pupils’ needs are addressed so they have the highest possible level of learning readiness.

Strategies for meeting these needs are woven into the fabric of our curriculum so the children are best placed to engage fully with the learning opportunities it provides.

The school follows the THRIVE  programme and invests in training to help all staff understand how to support learners’ social and emotional needs, growth and development.

The school is an OPAL (Outdoor Play And Learning) school, promoting health and wellbeing through high quality outdoor play.  

The school works with a range of external agencies to support families in safeguarding children and promoting physical and mental wellbeing.


Our curriculum

 Why our curriculum is as it is.

We want our learners to be their ‘Best selves’ exhibiting the following qualities

Engaged -

  • interested and interesting people,
  • playful,
  • imaginative,
  • enjoy learning for its own sake,
  • resilient 


Aspiring –

  • knowledgeable about the world around them 
  • know what life has to offer and which paths they may wish to follow in pursuit of happiness and wellbeing.
  • have high expectations of themselves and a desire to be their ‘best selves’.


Learning –

  • know and use  the habits of a successful learner
  • enjoy learning for its own sake
  • be fluent and have mastery in all subjects taught,
  • have the skills, knowledge and understanding to be able to engage and effect the world for the betterment of themselves and others now and in the future 
  • have the  skills, knowledge and understanding to ensure they can pursue their goals
  • judge and assess risks


Together –

  • be caring,
  • empathetic
  • able to appreciate the benefit of  rules and understand why we have them
  • self-disciplined
  • independent
  •  be able to self-regulate
  • make and maintain good  friendships
  • engage others by knowing and using appropriate social codes ( politeness, showing respect, able to ask questions, accept advice)
  • have a strong sense of self and self-worth
  • be able to make a positive contribution to the community


We are ‘Engaged, Aspiring, Learning Together’

How the above is achieved.

Effective teaching:


  • Teaching – enable learning to take place
  • Learning – internalise new skills, knowledge, attitudes and understanding. Be able to apply these in a variety of contexts and effectively transmit these to someone else (be able to teach it to others).

Effective teaching that

  • has high expectations and aspirations for learners’ outcomes
  •  awareness of aspirational  targets and commitment to helping all learners from whatever starting point reach these
  • has clarity about ‘final destination’ for the learners and why.
  • explicitly and implicitly teaches learners how to learn 
  • assesses starting points accurately
  • resources appropriately
  • groups learners effectively through assessment of need
  • creates a stimulating environment that inspires and supports pupils’  learning
  • uses  vivid ‘hooks’ into lessons and active openers ( where appropriate) to promote  learning  for all groups
  • uses  support staff  effectively
  • gives accurate and  clear explanations
  • responds effectively to misconceptions and reshapes teaching accordingly
  • allows learners to learn from each other 
  • provides  questions to consolidate and extend the learning of  individuals and groups 
  • has clarity about what success will look like,  engages learners with this  and  agrees  success criteria
  • provides feedback that the learners understand
  • gives learners opportunities to respond to feedback
  • is communicated with Passion and Personality.

This gives learners the opportunities to:

  • ask questions
  • know what they are learning, why they are learning it and how it fits into the bigger picture of their learning journey
  • know what they have to do to succeed
  • practise and consolidate basic skills to achieve fluency
  • try out new skills – refine and apply them
  • be active participants in lessons
  • be challenged to reason, debate, prove, justify and explain points of view and approaches to tasks and outcomes
  • encounter opportunities for deepening their thinking in lessons
  • be mentally and physically productive
  • become interdependent learners – take responsibility and be able to access help and support from a number of sources – the learning environment, each other, other adults, the teacher.
  • develop resilience and perseverance
  • be creative
  • problem solve
  • finish projects and take pride and pleasure in outcomes that, where appropriate, have a real purpose and audience
  • to develop understanding, by connecting new knowledge with existing knowledge


 What kind of curriculum enables the above?

A curriculum that:

  • is research based and draws upon most up to date best practice
  • enables learners to be thoroughly prepared for the next stage of their education 
  • is based on the National Curriculum 
  • seeks to engage  learners  with the best  of human , artistic, scientific, philosophical, spiritual , mathematical, technological ,  physical and creative skills knowledge and understanding
  • gives learners the  tools to  enable them to change their circumstances and the wider world for the better
  • helps learners understand  their responsibilities to others and the planet

By facilitating the above, we aim to:

Develop deep and lasting learning of skills knowledge and understanding

‘Learning can be defined as an alteration in long-term memory. If nothing has altered in long-term memory, nothing has been learned. However, transfer to long-term memory depends on the rich processes (as described above). In order to develop understanding, learners (must) connect new knowledge with existing knowledge. Learners also need to develop fluency and unconsciously apply their knowledge as skills… ( Ofsted Insepection handbook 5.19 p45 182)

Curriculum design

The curriculum is designed as a programme over 24 terms. It progressively introduces new learning, consolidates existing skills, knowledge and understanding and embeds learning through time. Pupils’ individual starting points are taken into account.  Events and teaching sequences provide opportunities to enrich life experience and deepen learning. (See curriculum overviews)

Where appropriate, learning opportunities are linked together into ‘cross curricular’ topics. Discrete skills and knowledge are taught to enable learners become skilled Mathematicians, Scientists, Writers, Readers, Programmers, Historians etc. Crucially however, links between subject skill sets and knowledge are made. This reinforces and enriches the learning.  (See topic outcomes criteria)

 The Outcomes 

  • Learners demonstrate through their written, oral, creative and physical outcomes, that they are deepening their knowledge, skills and understanding from their starting points.
  • Learners attitudes towards themselves and the world around them are positive and appropriately sophisticated
  • learners have grown towards and demonstrate attainment of  the characteristics from the Ridge child ‘Best self’ list (see above)
  • learners are fully  prepared to make a success of  the next formal stage of their education
  • the school’s reading, writing and mathematical outcomes match the top 20% outcomes nationally