Lowton St Mary’s follows the Department of Education’s National Curriculum. More details are available here.
We are committed to meeting the needs of all our learners, nurturing creative and sporting talent as well as supporting academic abilities. This is achieved by a cross-curricular approach to teaching, where the children will study a central ‘topic’ through different mediums. For example, events surrounding the sinking of Titanic can be explored through stories, pictures, even role-playing as well as the historical facts. In this way reading, writing, art, drama and history are combined to explore a central subject.
In class the children are taught in small groups, rotating between working with the teacher, the teaching assistant and independently; an approach called ‘continuous provision’. This prevents a lesson being aimed at a whole class of thirty at a time, and instead allows focused work to be set to strengthen individual needs. In Key Stage One we use the ‘Sounds Write’ synthetic phonics system to help the younger pupils develop literacy skills, moving onto ‘Spelling For Success’ in Key Stage Two to enhance what has been learned and widen vocabularies.
A range of special activities are likewise provided to vary the children’s learning but still augment their classroom work. School trips to places of interest related to the central topic will be arranged, themed workshops or the chance to talk to experts in a particular field will give the children a different perspective.
To ensure other skills are simultaneously being developed, and forming a break from topic work, there are French and music lessons to enjoy and a host of different sporting opportunities.
Coaches from Leigh Centurions Rugby League Club, Wigan Athletic Football Club and the Premier Sport group mean we can offer pupils the chance to have professional coaching in rugby, football, and gymnastics. There are also after-school courses in athletics and dance to try. Our school football team competes in the LOGOS league against other Lowton and Golborne area schools.
For music, Key Stage Two children will have the chance to learn woodwind, brass, strings and percussion instruments as a group, with additional piano and keyboard lessons being offered on an individual basis. Younger students will receive an introduction to music but will not have any specific instruments to practise with.
This curriculum incorporates our Christian ethos through collective worship in church and assemblies, as well as the specific values of Hope, Friendship, Peace, Justice, Koinonia, Creation and Forgiveness. In this way we aim to produce a thinking child with a lifelong love of learning.
Special Educational Needs
For children who experience learning, physical or behavioural difficulties, we offer a programme to support their needs in school based upon assessments through our own trained staff and advice from outside agencies, such as Speech and Language specialists for example. This programme has three levels:
- School Action: a child will receive additional support in school to help with reading or writing for example. For behavioural problems, the school will work closely with parents to address any issues that can be resolved by coming together and talking with the child about what might be upsetting them or at least making clear to them what is not deemed acceptable conduct.
- School Action Plus: Outside agencies who deal in specific areas of education will be asked to perform their own assessment and offer support to the child, such as Educational Psychologists.
- Statement: The school will apply for additional funding to provide individually tailored care for a pupil deemed to need specialist attention.
Parents will be consulted and kept informed of all the support being provided for their child so that together we can ensure everything is being done to allow them to prosper in learning. Wherever possible a pupil will be taught with their own peer group, unless it is deemed more beneficial for them to be placed with a different class.