At Stoughton Infant School our curriculum is unashamedly aspirational for the children, rooted in a belief that all children can achieve and excel. It is broad and balanced, designed to stimulate a love of learning which develops the whole child as an individual. Learning is planned carefully to ensure skills are built upon and mastered. This is achieved with added enrichment activities which are linked to and help children deepen their learning. For example, an embedded Forest Schools program enriches and supports learning in many subjects, especially science and geography. The school values of positivity, courage, perseverance, nurture and love support the children to achieve and thrive. This enables children at Stoughton Infant School to be well prepared for their next step in their education.
Reading and Phonics
We believe that phonics provides the foundation for all children to develop their reading and writing fluency. We want children to become proficient decoders so that they can find meaning and enjoyment from what they read. Above all, we want children to become lovers of reading and we promote this by teaching children the phonetic code and sharing stories in both oral and written form.
All children have the opportunity to read with and be read to by adults. Children take home reading books that are consistent with their developing phonic knowledge as well as library books that can be shared and enjoyed with their families. We follow the Letters and Sounds phonics progression and use a variety of reading book schemes that support this progression such as Big Cat Phonics, Dandelion Readers and Bug Club.
Children are provided with many opportunities to share and discuss what they have read with adults and peers. They develop comprehension through 1:1, shared, guided and whole class reading. We believe that reading underpins a broad and balanced curriculum, so the children are exposed to high quality texts with a variety of characters and settings. Each year group shares fiction, nonfiction and poetry from a core of high quality reading spines to support their teaching in all subjects. It is through these shared experiences that children develop their love of reading at Stoughton.
We want all children leaving Stoughton to be creative storytellers and writers, to develop strong transcription skills and coherently write fiction and non-fiction pieces. Above all we want children to develop a love, passion and enjoyment towards writing.
At Stoughton children are immersed in Talk for Writing from Nursery to Year 2. Children are taught how to compose stories using a variety of story structures (e.g. Journey Story) and how to create effective and coherent stories to engage the reader. Teachers act as expert models of the writing process in daily story telling and shared writing.
Grammar is taught explicitly through Talk for Writing units, as the familiar context ensures grammar knowledge is better internalised. Spelling lessons continue to build on solid phonic knowledge and children are taught key national curriculum spellings. Handwriting expectations are set high at Stoughton and children are taught correct formation of letters and cursive script.
At Stoughton we regularly ensure opportunities for children’s ideas and writing to be share, displayed, published but above all celebrated.
Handwriting and spelling are very closely linked so we teach our children to form letters correctly right from the start. We are currently phasing out the following script, where all letters start on the line. Year 1 and Year will still be learning cursive script but those starting school will learn to print letters and join later in educational journey. It is also important to teach children how to hold a pencil in the way that enables a comfortable writing style.
Mathematical learning at Stoughton should be fun, engaging and interesting for all children. We follow the National Curriculum and follow a mastery approach using White Rose small steps to ensure good progression in mathematical understanding. We want children to become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, to reason mathematically in a range of situations and to develop skills in problem solving. Learning through problem solving ensures a greater depth of understanding that can be transferred into a variety of contexts. Where possible mathematical learning is applied to everyday life building confident mathematicians. Careful planning develops children’s depth of understanding within mathematical concepts using a concrete, pictorial and abstract approach.
Children are naturally curious and we build upon this innate ability so that they learn and work logically. We use our extensive resources, including our excellent outside areas, to give children first-hand experience of exploring and discovering. For instance, during a project on comparing environments and understanding habitats, the children explore the different areas of the dry barren playground and wall, the pond, the field and the lush wildlife garden, discovering creatures and recording what they have found. As well as promoting scientific skills and knowledge this also develops areas of maths, geography, art and literacy, and the children are motivated and happy in their learning.
The children have a selection of gardens which they have designed (Art and Design) and maintain themselves.
They are responsible for making this sustainable by generating funds, making their own compost and saving water. They grow fruit and vegetables which they cook and share with their classes. They have won five Eco School Green Flags by increasing biodiversity, reducing litter and waste, conserving water and power, encouraging “clean” means of travel and promoting environmentally sound practises at home and abroad. They learn to keep safe, through Forest School activities.
Throughout all these activities they are learning how to communicate, negotiate, think creatively, problem solve, resolve conflict, plan and work effectively in a team (Speaking and Listening, Physical, Health, Social and Emotional curriculum).
Art & Design
At Stoughton Infant School we want all children to be given the opportunity to express themselves creatively through the medium of different art forms including drawing, painting, printing, sculpture, collage and ICT. We encourage children to explore their own ideas and celebrate their creations in and around the school. In the Early Years children learn art based skills during adult led activities, and explore their own creative ideas by accessing art resources and equipment independently during continuous provision. In KS1 carefully planned lessons ensure provide opportunities for children to further develop their skills and imagination by using mood, texture, line, shape and form.
At Stoughton, we use computers and new technologies across all areas of the curriculum from Nursery to Year 2. The children have access to Chrome books, tablets, iPads, programmable toys and interactive whiteboards.
Every child has an access to Purple Mash. Through this we teach the children how to develop and refine other computer skills such as typing, word processing, data handling, creating and editing pictures. Computing is important as it helps children to improve their maths and writing skills. Coding gives the children valuable life skills such as problem solving, thinking creatively, and it helps to develop resilience.
Children also have access to the Reading Eggs which is an app used to enhance phonic knowledge, reading fluency and comprehension.
Central to all learning, is how to use the internet in a safe and effective way. Children are taught how to stay safe online through a series of e-safety lessons.
At Stoughton, we aspire for all children to enjoy designing and making and to develop the practical expertise to solve a range of technical and everyday challenges. In EYFS, through continuous provision, children learn through play to develop early skills such as assembling, cutting, measuring and estimating by using a variety of construction materials and tools. These skills provide a secure foundation for more structured learning in KS1 where DT projects link more to set year group themes. Through following the DT process of ‘investigate, design, make and evaluate’, children learn to apply their knowledge to create visually appealing products that are functional, to test & critique ideas and to handle tools safely and effectively. We have a children’s kitchen where pupils have the opportunity to cook and to understand the principles of basic nutrition. Our DT lessons encourage our pupils to develop resilience and to become independent / collaborative learners.
We want all children at Stoughton to develop a greater understanding and knowledge of the world, as well as their place in it. We seek to inspire and promote the children's interest and understanding of diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments.
We place an emphasis on using the primary sources that are around us. Children will study geography through first hand experiences as they observe and investigate features of their local environment e.g. shops, church, river/canal, forest school area etc. and people who live and work in the locality.
We want all children at Stoughton to have an awareness and to be curious about the past. They will learn about changes in living memory and beyond that are significant locally, nationally, globally and commemorated through festivals or anniversaries. Children will be encouraged to use analytical thinking and questioning to explore and compare the lives of significant individuals in the past who contributed to national and international achievement.
We want all children at Stoughton to develop a love for singing and music, which is taught discreetly and also embedded across the curriculum. Music is taught across the school from Reception to Year 2 using a music scheme of work called Charanga, which engages the children in a range of fun lessons. Charanga ensures a good progression of skills across the years. Our nursery aged children are exposed to a variety of musical activities; including exploring and learning how sounds can be changed and learning to sing familiar songs.
Ordinarily, children gather for singing practice weekly, with songs chosen linked to a particular time of year, theme or celebration, for example Harvest. Throughout the year, the children have opportunities to perform in class assemblies, Christmas performances and at events in the community, such as singing at the local care home. Children can also access peripatetic piano and guitar lessons.
PE is a time for children to develop their coordination, agility, strength and creativity whilst learning the vital skills of cooperation and teamwork. The children will also gain an excellent understanding of the importance of keeping fit and eating a healthy, well balanced diet. Our range of spaces provide the children with a variety of active environments such as the field, playground and school hall where we are well equipped with small and large apparatus. In addition to timetabled PE lessons we also run a variety of clubs including cricket, tag rugby, rounders, multi skills and football. The whole school loves the staff versus children football match at the end of the term. After school clubs include, karate, boogie pumps, planet soccer and dodgeball. We are extremely lucky to have the sports premium funding available to us which we are able to use to enhance the quality of PE and sport at Stoughton. We recently achieved the gold award from Active Surrey for our high quality provision of PE and sport. The funding allows us to provide the children with high quality PE lessons from Primary Sporting Development once a week in key stage one. The children are able to experience quality lessons in games, dance, gymnastics and athletics with our professional coaches.
At Stoughton, we aim to promote personal wellbeing and development through a comprehensive taught programme of PSHE. This gives children the knowledge, understanding, attitudes and practical skills to live healthy, safe, productive and fulfilled lives, both now and in the future. We do this through a whole school resource called HeartSmart which includes Relationships Education and is designed to build resilience, character and emotional health in the hearts of the children as well as teaching them the necessary components of the PSHE curriculum. Boris, HeartSmart’s very own purpose-built Robot, provides a fun, interactive and dynamic way for children to explore their hearts, the very thing that makes them unique.
At Stoughton, we want the teaching of RE to provoke challenging questions about the meaning and purpose in life, beliefs about God, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human. We help children to develop a good understanding of different religions, including Christianity, Islam and Judaism. The teaching of RE plays a crucial part in enabling children to develop into well balanced, inquisitive and tolerant adults in the diverse society that they live in today.
Forest School was introduced to us by Surrey Wildlife Trust who ran it once a week for a year in our wildlife garden. We were so impressed by the benefits and positive impact it had on our children that we applied for Lottery Funding to train 10 people and offered this training to 3 of our own staff and 7 from local schools. Staff came from a variety of key stages including secondary.
Children learn outside in a wooded area that may be on or off site.
They learn how to:
Create and sustain a camp fire
Cook and make drinks on the camp fire
Source wood and sort it into different sizes for different purposes
Use tools effectively and safely such as saws, non-electrical drills and fire sticks
Keep themselves safe in a variety of situations
Work co-operatively in pairs as a team
Anticipate and offer when help is needed
Solve problems in a variety of situations
Listen to and follow instructions
Use language to ask questions, describe situations and explain procedures
Think, plan, sequence actions and evaluate
Appreciate and care for the environment and the diversity of creatures it sustains
Persevere (making fire is hard and we have witnessed children persevering for as much as an hour until they master it!)
Adapt techniques and plans
Forest Schools is incredibly engaging and motivating for children and is one of the best things we have found for promoting confidence and self esteem.
SEND & Additional Educational Needs
We value all our children equally and embrace their special abilities and special needs. Skilled and trained staff provide expert support for children with difficulties, either individually or in small groups. We ensure that every child has equal access to the curriculum and we have a policy of identifying and building upon their strengths in order to foster their confidence and self- esteem. We follow the Code of Practice on Identification and Assessment of Special Educational Needs and seek the advice of outside agencies such as the Educational Psychologist Service, Speech and Language Therapy, Language Difficulties Service, Literacy Support, Medical Service, Occupational therapy, Learning Support and the Behaviour Management Service. Children with Statements of Special Educational Needs are supported by a Special Needs Assistant within the classroom and are fully integrated into school life. Through our outstanding curriculum that offers such a diverse range of innovative activities we are committed to finding every child’s talents, whether it be as a mathematician, gardener, eco-warrior, artist or good friend so that each child is valued by our community, makes a recognised contribution and develops sound self-worth.
Our Communication and Interaction Centre - Bees Class - provides specialist provision for a small group of Nursery aged children who have identified speech and language needs. Our dedicated Speech & Language Therapist supports us for two mornings a week, delivering direct speech therapy. Bees class is very much part of the whole school community and we join our larger, parallel ‘Ladybird’ Nursery class for a free play session every morning. We follow a varied theme-based approach, inspired by calendar events, special occasions and the children’s interests. We strive to create a stimulating, language rich environment, providing play and structured learning opportunities to support the children to achieve their potential and to develop skills across the seven areas of learning, as set out in the Early Years Foundation Stage.
School Trips & Visitors
All Infant year groups go on school trips, and we also use our local environment as much as possible. For instance we go to the park to learn about forces in science, structures in Design Technology and shape in Maths. We do a survey of the pond and park to investigate litter and we do a tally of traffic in a selection of neighbourhood roads to learn about road safety, traffic congestion and parking. The neighbouring buildings provide a great resource when we study different types of homes and how they changed over the years.
We also welcome a wide variety of visitors to the school, ranging from mobile farms to African drumming workshops. Parents with special skills and members of the community such as nurses, firemen and builders are always welcome to talk with the children when this is relevant to our topics.