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'OUR' Curriculum

OUR (Olveston’s Unique Response) curriculum is designed to ensure that children have a love of learning, where expectations are high but more importantly, where we recognise each child for their uniqueness. During their time with us, interests and talents will be developed so that each child fulfils their potential; our curriculum is adaptable to respond to the interests of the children. Our goal is that children leave us with 'the roots of responsibility and the wings of independence'; they will be empowered to live their own lives and have resilience to face a rapidly changing world.

Everything we do at Olveston CEVC Primary School is planned to maximise learning within a place of love and laughter. Therefore, OUR curriculum is designed to:

  • Value every individual: knowing our children so well enables us to meet their needs and celebrate their individual achievements. Our behaviour system is holistic, positive and praise-centred, taking into account the needs and successes of every child.
  • Strive for excellence: high quality teaching is at the heart of all classroom practice, where children are supported and challenged in all areas of the curriculum.
  • Make use of our beautiful grounds and surroundings to ensure an enriched experience.
  • Develop well-rounded, global citizens: pupil voice and British values underpin our identity. OUR curriculum starts with the child and builds from a local/national to a global perspective.
  • Place relationships at the core: from the very start of their Olveston journey, children and their families are embraced through home visits by the headteacher and EYFS team. Our buddy system provides children with a friendly foundation which spans their time with us, great friendships are forged.
  • Place our school in the heart of the local area, linking school, church and families, past, present and future.
  • Build confidence and resilience: children at Olveston are encouraged to build Learning Powers to develop a growth mind-set and take risks.


Therefore, the central aims of OUR curriculum are high standards, high equity and high enjoyment.

 Although the National Curriculum forms a part of our whole school curriculum, we take autonomy for OUR curriculum and for the way we plan for and deliver a broad and balanced learning experience. Therefore we are committed to offering as many high quality opportunities, in all subjects, as our financial capacity allows. In addition OUR school curriculum is enriched by a wide variety of before and after school clubs.


From September 2019, Olveston’s curriculum will be delivered under the following themes:

Year 1 – War and Peace, Conservation, Innovation and Enterprise.

Year 2: Faiths and Cultures, Explorers and Create.

Each theme will be developed to start with the child and then extend to local, national and global perspectives. Under these ‘umbrella’ themes, we ensure that all children learn; reading, writing, maths, computing, science, history, geography, music, art, design technology, P.E., French, R.E., e-safety, and British Values/citizenship and lots of outdoor learning. All staff will seek out relevant and meaningful opportunities to develop pupils’ social, moral, cultural and spiritual understanding when teaching all subjects. Each term the children will enjoy special ‘WOW’ events, trips, visitors, cross phase learning and lots of time outdoors. The result is a curriculum that excites, engages and motivates everyone thus enabling every learner to enjoy and achieve.


What the Children say

“Term 3 got off to a tremendous start with a phone call from Rich Warren, a scientist based at the Halley VI research centre in Antarctica. Every child in Year 6 prepared and asked questions which he answered thoroughly.”


"I liked the wow day for space because we thought a spaceship had landed outside our classroom! There were clues and the alien had its own language!  I liked learning about the planets and the objects on the ground looked like they were from a spaceship."  Year 1


Building Learning Powers

We are committed to building young people’s learning power, not just what they are learning, but how they are learning. A major development for our school has been the introduction of Professor Guy Claxton’s pioneering work BLPs (Building Learning Powers). BLPs help children become more effective learners; it suggests that there are four learning dispositions- Resilience, Resourcefulness, Reflectiveness and Reciprocity. We are all born with these dispositions and they are not fixed. We ensure that children develop a Growth Mindset to help support the effectiveness of their learning. We help children develop a positive 'can do' approach that enables them not to set fixed limits on their learning potential.  Building Learning Power is an integral part of lessons, assemblies and all we do at Olveston CEVC School.


We aim to ensure that deep learning can be applied in a range of different curriculum areas. This enables children to master the requirements of the curriculum.  We focus on learning approaches that require children to apply their skills and knowledge through problem solving and analytical thinking. All pupils at our school will be supported to become highly articulate. The development of mature speaking and listening skills will be given a high priority. Pupils will be taught to speak clearly, precisely and audibly, using sophisticated and expressive vocabulary. All pupils will be encouraged to develop the art of public speaking. They will also become skilled at engaging in a productive discussion through the posing of ‘Big Questions’.

Love of Reading


We want our children to love reading and to recognise that reading opens a world of opportunities.

The school fosters a love of reading from the very beginning with the sharing of high quality texts in Reception, encouraging a love of story as well as of ‘finding out’ from information texts. The sequential teaching of phonics (see below) is built on through a system of individual, paired and guided reading throughout the Foundation Key Stage, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2.

The school has high quality reading texts for guided reading and guided reading sessions take place both within some literacy lessons and separately. In KS2, whole class texts are studied, in addition to brief extracts. In this way, the English curriculum exposes the children to the work of a range of high quality writing from authors such as Dick King-Smith, Jacqueline Wilson, Anne Fine, Michael Morpurgo, Berlie Doherty and Ann Turnbull. We also, study a range of traditional and modern poetry and non-fiction genres.

The 'little extras'


For children to reach their potential they require a healthy body and mind and we ensure that our children have a wide range of opportunities to engage in sport and physical education. The daily run is embedded into the school day and we recently ran the distance to Athens to raise money for sports and agility equipment. Yoga and martial arts have also featured in our curriculum this year.


Linked Subject Areas

Subjects not covered by theme and taught discretely.


The school teaches synthetic phonics according to the government recommended programme “Letters and Sounds”. This takes children through 6 phases. Children learn at different stages but by the end of reception the majority of children will be secure at phase 3.

In Reception, year one and year 2 phonics is taught 4 times a week for 20 minutes. New sounds, graphemes, tricky words and spellings are sent home in Reception and KS1. During years one and two the children move onto phase 4, 5 and 6, revising sounds learnt so far, blending and segmenting a variety of words, learning alternative spellings and endings of words.

The government’s statutory Phonic Screening Check takes place in year one, identifying any children who will need extra support to improve their reading skills. Leaflets are available to parents about what sounds are taught in each phase.



The Learning Journey at school starts:

EYFS (Reception class)

Assessment is an integral part of development in a child’s education. On admission, children are assessed against the Early Learning Goals (ELGs) and continue to be assessed throughout the Foundation Stage (Reception). There are seven learning goals.

Prime areas:

  • Communication and language
  • Physical development
  • Personal, social and emotional development

Specific areas:

  • Literacy
  • Maths
  • Understanding of the world
  • Expressive arts and designs


These ELGs are used to provide the children with targets to improve their learning and


For further information about the EYFS curriculum visit:

 The Learning Journey continues in Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2:

Assessments are also made in all other subjects within Key Stages 1 and 2. The school uses AREs (Age Related Expectations) as our main form of assessment focus alongside children’s own self and peer assessments and formal tests. Feedback is given during lessons and next steps made explicit to enable good and accelerated progress to be achieved.


In Years 2 and 6 National tasks and/or tests are taken. The resulting levels are assessed against the nationally agreed criteria. These are reported to parents during the summer term. Towards the end of Year 1, the government’s statutory Phonic Screening Check takes place, identifying any children who will need extra support to improve their reading skills.


INCLUSION/SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disability)

We aim to ensure that every effort is made to take account of the wide range of abilities, aptitudes and interests that children bring to school. The majority of children will learn and progress within the daily school cycle and those who require support may be deemed as having

Special Educational Needs. These needs will be catered for within the special educational needs provision. The Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo) works with the children, parents and staff to ensure the appropriate provision is put into practice for the child’s developmental needs. Pupil passport are written for the children at School Action Plus to make sure they are given the appropriate differentiated learning strategies for their learning to progress and success to be made. There are monitoring systems, to assess the impact of these plans and enable new steps to be written. We successfully work with many different outside agencies including Educational Psychology, Speech and Language, Health Service and Inclusion Support. The school has a positive approach towards including children with disabilities. There is access to all parts of the building via ramps or level entrances. There is equal access to facilities and to all aspects of the curriculum.



The class teachers identify some children as working well above their age related curriculum. These could be in academic, artistic or physical related areas of their learning.


We value and encourage all the children within our school to strive to do their best to their own ability, without exception. Therefore, opportunities are given to all children to enrich their curriculum.



Home Learning is set on a regular basis for children in Key Stage 1 and 2. All children are encouraged to take home reading books and to follow up interests that have been developed in school. Children will be asked to research into a project, learn multiplication tables and spellings or consolidate class learning. Children will receive mathematics and literacy work (relating to class learning) to complete at home. We use the agreed recommendations of amount of time any home learning should take from the Department for Education. This is a progressive scale of time up to on average 1 ½ to 2 hours per week for Year 6 children (including reading and spellings).The aims of home learning are to promote; positive attitudes, reinforce, develop and extend the child’s learning. Your support and encouragement with home learning is appreciated.

For further details of home learning, please visit the school website.



At Olveston, we are proud of our musical, artistic and sporting traditions and achievements. The school offers these enriching activities both within and outside of curriculum time. There is a wide range of sporting and cultural activities on offer for the children who attend Olveston School. These include: instrumental tuition, Sing Stars, Drama, Film Club, Chess, Football, Tag Rugby, Kwik Cricket, Netball, Basketball, Gardening, Art, Science Club, KS1 Scooting, sewing club, multisports. We aim to provide opportunities for all age ranges within the school and encourage parental help with these activities

Pupils have opportunities to share their learning with each other, their parents and carers and other learners through school-based and external exhibitions, performances, competitions and events involving other schools.