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Orchard School Bristol

 

Our Orchard Curriculum

Our curriculum inspires our students to empower them for life. We recognise that knowledge is powerful and that young people who are creative thinkers, readers, speakers and leaders can become agents of change.

We champion academic success and nurture personal development with the support of a highly qualified and dedicated team of education professionals who build purposeful links through the curriculum and an enriching co-curriculum.

Our curriculum is shaped by our students as it responds to their needs, and is underpinned by the values of Orchard School, the touchstones of the Trust and community priorities.

 Key Principles

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.

 Creative thinkers, readers, speakers and leaders

Our curriculum includes opportunities for students to become the creative thinkers, readers, speakers and leaders of the future. What features support this in our curriculum? What makes us different?

  • Philosophy for Children in Years 7 & 8
  • GROW EPQ in Year 9
  • Reading at Registration for all students
  • Oracy across the Curriculum
  • Leadership Opportunities for all students in every year group; leadership built into curriculum time and supported through a team of passionate staff.

 Key Stage 3

Key Stage 3 refers to students in Year 7, Year 8 and Year 9 (age 11 - 14).

Our timetable runs over two weeks.

 Year 7

English - 9 lessons over two weeks. This includes additional literacy skills or Latin, depending on each student's prior attainment in English

Maths - 8 lessons over two weeks.

Science - 6 lessons over two weeks.

Humanities - 6 lessons over two weeks. This includes 2 lessons of History, 2 lessons of Geography, 1 lesson of Religious Studies and 1 lesson of Philosophy for Children.

Languages - 5 lessons over two weeks. Students take French and Spanish, carrying out half a year of each language, before deciding which language they prefer to study from year 8 onwards.

Art, Digital and Technology - 6 lessons over two weeks. This includes 2 lessons of art and textiles and 2 lessons of IT and digital media. Students have 2 lessons of Food Studies / 3D Product Design (half a year of each).

Core PE - 5 lessons over two weeks. Students also have an opportunity to do PE every break and lunchtime with outside play and structured sports activities, and after school clubs.

PSHE - 1 lesson per two weeks delivered by Sports and Health staff. Personal, social, health and economic education including relationships, sex and health education (RSHE).

Performing Arts - 4 lessons over two weeks, including 2 of Music and 2 of Drama each week.

Personal Development - delivered in every afternoon 40 minute tutor time. This is focused on our Orchard Values and includes assemblies and year team messages. The personal development programme includes PSHE, RSHE and spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) aspects. Students explore current affairs and also develop their leadership. Additional drop down days are provided for specific delivery of key topics such as Employability Days or PSHE (healthy life choices) days.

Enrichment - This takes place on a Monday afternoon and is an opportunity for students to experience a very different lesson, and shape their own curriculum, which teachers and external partners provide. Students choose new Enrichment options a few times through the year, so they can try out lots of different courses to find their passion. Examples of enrichment options have included Gardening, Coding Club, Yoga for Children, Jewellery Making, Bike Maintenance, Creative Writing, Table Tennis, Nature Club. Poetry of Rap, Critical Thinking, Italian, Architectural Drawing, and World Sports.

Reading - students Read at Registration time every morning (20 minutes)

 Year 8

This is the same as the curriculum for year 7, except in Languages.

Languages - 5 lessons every two weeks of either Spanish or French, as selected by students at the end of Year 7.

 Year 9

Humanities Faculty – an increase to 4 lessons in Geography and 4 lessons in History. 1 lesson in religion, ethics and philosophy (World Views).

GROW – 1 lesson, this is a research project, similar to the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) at Post-16, where students learn how to develop a research question, review evidence and literature, write their project up and then present it to their class.

Art, Digital and Technology Faculty subjects and Performing Arts Faculty subjects:
By year 9, students need to be able to extend their skills fully, and so instead of a single lesson every week of the year, students have a double lesson for half of the year. This means that all students experience all aspects of the curriculum, but in more depth. This enables them to explore their passions further, and prepares them better for GCSE and vocational options.

All students experience 4 lessons for half a year in the following subject areas:

ADT - Art and Design, including Graphics, and 3D Design

ADT - Food studies

Performing Arts – Drama (Oracy focus)

Performing Arts - Music performance

Core PE - 4 lessons over two weeks. Students also have an opportunity to do PE every break and lunchtime with outside play and structured sports activities, and after school clubs.

Key Stage 4

Key Stage 4 refers to students in Year 10 and Year 11 (age 14-16).

Our timetable runs over two weeks.

Year 10

English - 9 lessons, including GCSE English Language and GCSE English Literature

Maths – 8 lessons per week, GCSE Maths

Science - 12 lessons, covering Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Students study Separate

Sciences - known as 'Triple Science', in which they gain three GCSEs or Combined Science, covering all three sciences, in which they gain two GCSEs.

3 Options - 3 lessons for each Option
We expect the majority of students to take at least one Humanity and one Language

  • Art
  • Classical Civilizations
  • Drama
  • French
  • Geography
  • Graphics
  • Health and Social Care
  • Hospitality and Catering
  • History
  • Music
  • Religious Studies
  • Spanish
  • Sports Science
  • 3D Design
  • Home Language GCSE (such as Arabic, Chinese, German, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian)
  • Core PE - 3 lessons. Students also have the opportunity for outdoor sports each break and lunchtime, and for after school clubs.

Personal Development - delivered in every afternoon 40 minute tutor time. focused on our Orchard Values and including assemblies and Year team messages. The personal development programme includes PSHE, RSHE and spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) aspects, career information, advice and guidance. Students explore current affairs and also develop their leadership. Additional drop down days are provided for specific delivery of key topics such as Employability Days or PSHE (healthy life choices) days.

Work Experience – every student has the opportunity for one week work experience during Year 10.

Reading - carried out at Registration time five mornings per week for 20 minutes.

 Year 11

In Year 11 students continue with the same courses they studied in Year 10.

Our most able maths students may, in addition, work towards a Further Maths GCSE.

Reading novels in registration continues until Christmas, and from that point on, students read English Literature texts in the morning.

 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. Students are able to move to languages lessons when they are ready to.

For new arrivals to the country (with English as an Additional Language), we may substitute extra English classes instead of GCSE courses.

We make adjustments where necessary to the curriculum to ensure individual students' needs are met in order to make excellent progress.

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