The curriculum at Balsall Common Primary School Academy is rich, challenging and relevant. We aim to provide an exciting, stimulating and cohesive curriculum that motivates everyone and enables every learner to enjoy and achieve.
Our curriculum is thematic and each theme has either an entry or an exit ‘Inspiration Day’. The learning that takes place during these days delivers the opportunity for real life, hands-on experiences for the topic being studied. Experiences include undertaking an archaeological ‘dig’, dressing up and spending the day as Tudors, Victorians or Egyptians, visiting the Space Centre, tasting foods from around the world, or creating the Amazon rainforest in the classroom!
We also use Mantle of the Expert strategies, which means that the children learn as part of an imaginary enterprise. For example, they may be running a restaurant, a travel agency, or looking after pets whilst their owners are on holiday! The children love this way of learning and gain a great deal in terms of problem solving and collaborative working.
We ensure that our children are taught the basic and crucial skills of reading, writing, maths and science. These subjects are taught discretely as well as through the thematic teaching of other subjects. French language is taught discretely in weekly sessions from Year 2 to Year 6. All our schemes of work are designed to meet the needs of the children, including the most able.
All children receive weekly PE lessons in gym, games or dance, and swimming lessons take place on a fortnightly basis. In addition there are sports coaching sessions for children in KS2 who have been identified as particularly talented.
Year 6 take part in an Enterprise Week, which gives the children the opportunity to experience life in the working world. Through links with local business people, the children learn how to set up a company and to sell products which funds their end of year ‘Fun Day’. All our children receive spiritual, moral, social and cultural lessons, which we believe prepares them to be successful citizens of the future.
Throughout the school year, we have many trips and residential visits, which help to develop social skills and independence as well as contributing to the children’s knowledge and understanding in the various curriculum areas. In addition, the school plans numerous opportunities to visit different places of worship. Children’s knowledge and understanding of different faiths and cultures is explored during lessons and encourages a real tolerance of others. As a result, children have a good appreciation of radicalisation and are being prepared well for life in modern Britain.
We believe in the approach to ‘learning to learn’, espoused by Guy Claxton – Building Learning Power. Through the ethos of the school and our curriculum children are encouraged to develop learning capacities which will help them to become confident, capable, creative and life-long learners.
We offer an extensive range of extra-curricular opportunities including a comprehensive range of sporting activities including – football, cricket, swimming, rugby, netball, rounders, athletics and dance. We also offer drama, ICT, cookery, science, art, chess and gardening.