Useful Links

Useful Links


In the Early Years and Foundation Stage we follow the the principles of how a child learns and develops in the early years foundation stage. This following document from the Department of Education explains this very well.

At Brookside we follow the 2014 National Curriculum which contains the essential knowledge that all children  learn from Year 1 to Year 6.


Some Key Points:


  • The new English curriculum has a greater emphasis on spelling, punctuation and grammar, as well as developing vocabulary, right from key stage 1.
  • There will be a greater emphasis on spoken English and pupils will learn debating and presenting skills from a young age.
  • Phonics are taught from Early Years and there is a Phonics Tests at the end of Year 1. See below for a Phonics overview.



  • The new mathematics curriculum involves more rote learning of concepts such as simple and more complicated sums, and mental arithmetic. 
  • By the end of year 1, pupils will be expected to learn to count up to 100, rather than 20 as in the previous curriculum, and learn number bonds up to 20. They will also learn to read and write numbers up to 20 in digits, and words and fractions.
  • In Early Years, Year 1 and Year 2 we are using the Singapore approach to mathematics (There have been some recent parent sessions). In the Singapore approach there is:
  • An emphasis on problem solving and comprehension, allowing students to relate what they learn and to connect knowledge
  • Emphasis on the foundations for learning and not on the content itself so students learn to think mathematically as opposed to merely reciting formulas or procedures.
  •  Year 2 means more mental mathematics, partitioning of numbers and written problems.
  • By the age of 9, children will have learned their times tables up to 12x12, rather than 10x10 by the end of primary school, as was previously the case.
  • Calculators will not be introduced until the end of key stage 2 in order to encourage children to work things out in their head and on paper.



  • The focus for science in Key Stage 1 and 2 will be scientific knowledge and the language of science.
  • Concepts, such as evolution, experimentation, photosynthesis, the water system, electricity and dinosaurs and fossils, will form the core curriculum.
  • There will be less emphasis on understanding the nature and methods of science in abstract terms and more emphasis on working and thinking scientifically: KS1 – hands on activities and asking questions. KS2 – making decisions about which type of scientific enquiry is relevant e.g. recording, observing etc. and drawing conclusions using knowledge and understanding.
  • There will also be a much stronger prominence given to human health and wellbeing, with topics on healthy eating, diet and exercise and the effects of drugs, alcohol and smoking on the human body.


Design and Technology (DT)

  • As an important STEM (Science, Technology Engineering and Maths) subject, far more importance has been given to D&T.
  • The aim of the curriculum is for your children to become the designers, engineers and innovators of tomorrow.
  • Children will be taught a wider range of topics and will be given experience in the use of different design equipment, such as electronics and robotics, to prepare them for the jobs of the future (Inspiring Futures).
  • In key stage 2, children will be taught about important D&T events through history, such as the start of the World Wide Web, to give them more knowledge of how technology has shaped the world we live in.



  • Computing replaces Information and Communication Technology (ICT). The Department for Education want children to be ‘computer doers’ not just ‘computer users’.
  • Computing is another STEM subject, and so it will be very important for future careers.
  • Gone are word processing and databases, now your children will learn, by the end of key stage 1, what an algorithm is, how to create and debug a simple program and how to use technology to create, organise, store, manipulate and retrieve digital content.
  • In the new curriculum there is a strong focus on e-safety and what to do if a child has concerns about content or interactions online.


Languages (French at Brookside)

  •  In order to prepare pupils for languages at high school and beyond, in an increasingly multi-cultural society, the Department for Education has introduced languages as a statutory requirement in key stage 2.
  • A modern or ancient language will be taught from year 3.
  • French is taught at Brookside from Year 3.
  • Your children will be immersed in the new language, learning phrases, vocabulary, songs, poems and rhymes.
  • By the end of year 6, children will be expected to master the grammar and punctuation of the new language, and will be able to converse, read, present and write in that language.
  • In Year 5 we offer a French trip opportunity to Gravenchon.
  • Y6 French pupils from Gravenchon visit the school for a week each Spring.



  • History at primary school is focused on teaching children events in a chronological order. From events in their own life, to events of local and national significance.
  • The history curriculum extends from the achievements of the earliest civilisations on the planet, to Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee, and everything in between.



  • The new approach to geography is concise and sets out the core knowledge that students should acquire. There is no prescribed teaching approach for geography, but there is more emphasis on locational and place knowledge, human and physical processes and skills such as map reading and fieldwork.
  • These changes mean more hands-on learning outside the classroom.


Art and Design

  • The art and design and music curricula, though largely similar, have been slimmed down to give us more freedom in what and how we teach your children.
  • Art and design are still as important as they have ever been and the work your children do throughout their time at primary school will lay the foundations for key stage 3.



  • Music is very important at Brookside where we perform at many local and national events.


Physical Exercise (PE)

  • In the new PE curriculum, pupils will develop core movement and the chance to develop a competitive spirit by engaging in both team and individual sports.
  • As a school, we aim to offer children the opportunity to be physically active for sustained periods of time on a regular basis in order for them to improve their health and wellbeing.
  • Children will be taught to swim, (In the autumn term Year 4 and Year 2; in the Spring term Year 2 and Year 3 and in the Summer term Year 3 and Year 1)
  • Specialist Provision swim every week on either a Thursday or a Friday. Some specialist children access Hydro on a Friday.



  • The national curriculum levels will no longer be used to assess attainment at any key stage.
  • There is an ‘expected’ standard in each subject per Year group for the children to reach (See our CORE standards based on the National Curriculum below).
  • We have developed our own assessment strategy as a school, We are currently developing it so that it offers reliable information to you as parents about how your child and the school are performing. This will help us to drive improvement and to ensure that we are keeping up with local and national best practice.
  • We will be holding sessions on this during the Spring and Summer terms. If you have any questions please feel that you can discuss them with me (Brian Walton - Either on the gates during the morning or Afternoon or contacts the school office to arrange a meeting).


All children in Year1 to Year 6 will be assessed as follows:


Emerging Meeting Exceeding
Pupils are here if they are not meeting the expectation for their year group at the end of the year.  Pupils are here if they have been assessed to be meeting the expected statements. If they have met allthe standards we will say they have 'mastered' their year group expectations. Pupils are here if they been assessed as exceeding all the expected statements This is where they build on their 'depth' of understanding and knowledge.


Core Curriculum