At William Murdoch Primary School, we firmly believe a good education in the Early Years provides a strong foundation for children to be successful learners as they progress through their school years.

We use the Early Years Foundation Stage as a guide, which breaks the curriculum into seven areas of learning. Each area of learning is important and allows children to develop key skills. The characteristics of effective learning and the prime areas of learning contribute to the success of our children. They encourage the children to be independent, reflective, sociable and well presented. Additionally, these areas also enable the children to apply their knowledge and skills into other areas of their learning and achieve the best that they can.

We have designed our own ‘knowledge-rich’ curriculum which focuses on allowing the children to explore and develop understanding in the prime areas such as Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design. Children are taught knowledge from very early on and this is further developed year on year; extending vocabulary plays an integral role in the knowledge rich curriculum. Children are consistently exposed to new vocabulary which is revisited often to ensure it is embedded.

Reading is at the heart of what we do. Throughout the academic year reading books have been carefully selected to match what is being taught and help generate both an interest and a love for reading.  Story time and reading aloud is a valued part of the daily routine and we firmly believe listening to stories, poems and rhymes feed children’s imaginations, enhances their vocabulary and develops their comprehension.

Systematic synthetic phonics is taught daily, since this knowledge is also essential for spelling and supports children in early writing. Reading books are well matched to the children’s phonic knowledge

Our Maths curriculum is structured using Power Maths, which is a DfE-backed mastery programme that is directly aligned to the well-respected White Rose Maths schemes of learning. The scheme uses the Concrete, Pictorial, Abstract (CPA) approach which develops both pupils’ procedural fluency and conceptual understanding. There is a strong focus on spending significant time developing in pupils a deep knowledge of key mathematical principles.