The Curriculum at Knowle DGE supports our mission statement: all equal, all different, all achieving together by giving pupils the opportunity to learn and develop in a supportive and creative environment. There is a focus on recognising achievement, supporting progression and providing an environment where pupils feel safe, happy and learning. Knowle DGE is committed to developing the skills and knowledge that pupils need in order to take advantage of opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life.
The Academy is committed to providing a broad and balanced curriculum; in order to allow pupils the full range of opportunities whilst ensuring that it is accessible and challenging for all, we have based the curriculum on an adapted National Curriculum. In order to engage, motivate and offer an enrichment that many of our pupils would not otherwise experience, we supplement the National Curriculum with a wide range of vocational and practical learning and ensure that the curriculum is planned to meet individual student needs. Our curriculum ensures that the pupils have access to, and can attain, formal qualifications and career pathways in line with the majority of their peers and can also gain vocational qualifications that provide pathways into further education and the world of work
We recognise that many of our learners require the curriculum to be differentiated by not only content but also in delivery and therefore the curriculum is individualised, creative, innovative and flexible allowing for the needs of each pupil to be met. It aims to promote the social, moral, spiritual and cultural development of the pupils as well as their intellectual and physical development and is carefully sequenced to ensure that all students are able to build on prior learning and make at progress in their learning. We recognise that many of our pupils arrive with gaps in their learning, their skills and their knowledge and so the classroom based curriculum is supplemented by a range of personalised interventions. Each pupil has an individual provision plan which ensures that their curriculum is planned to meet their needs, linking their classroom and intervention provision and ensuring that needs, as identified through assessments and EHCPs are met.
Knowle DGE is a “nurturing academy” where we value the holistic progress of our pupils taking into consideration their social and emotional and developmental needs. Our curriculum combines knowledge based, skills based and therapeutically informed approaches in order to prepare our pupils for further education, the workplace and the wider world. The needs of each pupil are carefully mapped against their provision ensuring that, for each child, there is a clear link between needs, progress and the curriculum, including any intervention curriculum.
In order to support the mental and physical health of our pupils we have developed a Ways of Wellbeing curriculum adapted from the NHS ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’. This curriculum provides an enriched, holistic approach to developing a greater awareness of themselves in relation to their health, their wellbeing, their community and their values and is delivered through lessons on communication, PSHE, RE, charity/community work, being healthy and the environment.
Knowle DGE is committed to ensuring every pupil makes progress regardless of their context or starting point. We will set high expectations which inspire, motivate, support and challenge pupils and we carefully monitor the progress towards these expectations. We believe pupils should enjoy and be enthusiastic about the curriculum and their learning and should be engaged motivated and involved in all lessons. This can be driven through a personalised curriculum and range of teaching strategies and will result in a purposeful atmosphere where children are on task and learning.
Key stages 1 and 2, year 7 and a small number of year 8 and 9 students follow a primary model where they have a daily English lesson, a daily maths lesson, a daily reading and WoW (Ways of Wellbeing) lesson and a range of topic based and practical learning. The Primary curriculum at Knowle DGE follows an adapted national curriculum, with flexibility dependent on young people’s needs. It is 'theme based' in its approach with lessons that revolve around a central topic and a key text. The theme based approach gives purpose to the learning and helps to create links between aspects of learning and schemata.
Year 8 and 9 follow an adapted KS3 National Curriculum that is supplemented by a range of practical and vocational learning. In order to ensure that pupils make good progress in the core areas of English and maths, they have daily lessons that follow a carefully sequenced curriculum ensuring that gaps in learning are addressed.
Our KS4 and Post 16 pupils have the opportunity to study towards a range of Entry Level, Functional Skill, GCSE and BTEC Vocational qualifications and to develop functional skills, independence skills and skills for working life as appropriate in line with the 14-19 Curriculum.
All students have a daily WoW lesson.
Please see the Curriculum Policy for more information including the specific subjects offered at each Key Stage.
Please see our Reading and Phonics Policy for further information about the teaching of reading at Knowle DGE.
Please see our Curriculum Plan for September 2020 document and our Teaching to Support a Recovery Curriculum document for further information on our post-lockdown recovery curriculum.