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Curriculum

We are one community of adults and young people working together to make sure that each child is supported in fulfilling their potential - academically, socially and emotionally. We are ambitious for everyone – we focus on excellence and we expect the best from everyone.

Strategic Intent

The aim of our curriculum is to enable the best from everyone; realising our core ORCHARD values by inspiring and empowering students to be:

  • Open minded
  • Respectful
  • Creative and Curious
  • Healthy
  • Ambitious
  • Responsible
  • Determined

Our curriculum is based on key principles.  These are outlined below, together with potential impact:

  • To ensure our students experience a clearly communicated curriculum programme that gives them the best opportunities now and in the future for success, independence and fulfilment: underpinned by our belief in the immense potential of our students;
  • To provide a rigorous academic curriculum that is challenging, engaging, enriching and accessible to all: informed by enquiry and research based evidence and adapted where necessary to ensure students’ individual needs are met in order to make excellent progress.
  • To provide a curriculum that puts knowledge and understanding at its centre, and focuses on the best learning to support the development of skills to enable accurate recall, application and making increasingly sophisticated links within subject areas and across the curriculum.
  • To provide a broad range of curriculum experiences, activities and pathway opportunities in and beyond lessons including vocational and technical subjects and leadership opportunities to meet the learning needs, enjoyment and aspirations of our students.
  • To provide continuity and progression between the key stages, using assessment to inform teaching and learning, feedback and improvement.
  • To provide a coherent Orchard Values programme of personal, health, social and economic education; careers education, information, advice and guidance; and religious education, philosophy and ethics.  These programmes support our students’ social, moral, spiritual and cultural education and develop full understanding of British values, thus ensuring our students are knowledgeable and well informed citizens,
  • To provide expert, up-to-date careers guidance that is presented impartially and gives our students access to high quality, current information supporting excellent progression to Post 16 pathways, higher education, training and employment;
  • To ensure that student progress is at least in line with national expectations and students are best prepared for national tests and examinations.
  • To maintain the highest standards of literacy and numeracy across the curriculum so that students have essential skills for life and are able to make excellent progress.

Curriculum Implementation

We run a one-week timetable of twenty-five lessons plus an additional enrichment hour on a Wednesday

The Key Stage 3 curriculum - Years 7 and 8

Subject

Hours per week

English – including Latin

5

Mathematics

4

Science

3

Humanities – History, Geography and Religion Ethics and Philosophy

3

Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) - French and Spanish

2

Art and Textiles

1

IT/Computing and Digital Media

1

Design and Technology: Product Design and Cookery

1

Performing Arts – Drama and Music

1

Core PE

2

Orchard Values and Skills – Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE), Learning Skills and Careers Education

2

Enrichment Programme – an exciting range of stimulating, thought-provoking, challenging and developmental activities and specialist areas of focused participation.

1

During Year 7 students have the opportunity to make curriculum pathway choices for Year 8 in Modern Foreign Languages. 

In year 8 students also make choices in Creative and Performance subjects.  Students select two subjects to study in more depth for one year.  They choose from: Art and Textiles, Drama, Digital Media and IT, Food & Catering, Music/Music Technology, and Product Design.  The aim of these courses are to give the students more in-depth understanding and enjoyment in a creative or performance subject, in order to inform GCSE preferences for the following year, and appreciate the value of creative and performance courses. 

Year 9 curriculum

Subject

Hours per week

English – Language and Literature

5

Mathematics

4

Science – beginning GCSE Science leading to Combined Science or Triple Award

4

Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) - French or Spanish

2

Humanities – History and Geography

4

Two subjects from creative and performance subjects:

Art and Textiles, Drama, Digital Media and IT, Food & Cookery, Music/Music Technology, and Product Design

2 x 2

Core PE

2

Orchard Values and Skills – Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE), Learning Skills, Religion Ethics and Philosophy, Careers Education.

1

During Year 9 students have the opportunity to make curriculum pathway choices for Years 10 & 11. Students choose to study History or Geography GCSE and two other subjects.

Year 10 & 11 curriculum

Subject

Hours per week

English – Language and Literature

5

Mathematics

4

Science – beginning GCSE Science leading to Combined Science or Triple Award

6

Humanities – History or Geography

3

Two GCSEs/vocational/technical awards, from pathway choices: Art, Classical Civilization, Drama, Digital Media and IT, Food and Cookery, French, Health and Social Care, Music, PE (Sports Studies), Product Design, Religious Studies, Spanish

2 x 3

Core PE

1

Orchard Values and Skills – Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE), Learning Skills, Religion Ethics and Philosophy, Careers Education.

1

Y10 – one week Work Experience

 

Additional opportunities

  • Students may study Entry Level and Step up courses prior to GCSE in English, Maths and Science
  • Students are also encouraged to sit GCSEs in their home language
  • Opportunities to access a range of awards and qualifications such as the Duke of Edinburgh Award are included in and beyond lessons
  • We also have drop-down curriculum days, for example Employability Days, or PSHE (healthy life choices) days

Accessing the curriculum

We ensure that our curriculum is accessible to students with additional learning needs as follows:

  • For a small number of students who require extra learning support in English or Maths when they join us, these students will take extra English or extra Maths instead of learning a foreign language
  • For new arrivals to the country (with English as an Additional Language), we may substitute extra English classes instead of GCSE courses
  • For a very small number of students who need more accessible qualifications, we run a Work Skills programme.  Students work through fewer GCSEs, but can gain an accredited qualification in more practical skills (such as Prince’s Trust or Forest School).

If you require further information about our curriculum please contact us at info@osb.school