WHSS Curriculum is a broad and balanced, knowledge-rich curriculum. Its content is delivered through a range of subject-specific projects, which last either a full or half term.
Subject-specific projects cover art and design, design and technology, geography, history and science.
Maths is delivered through projects from the White Rose Maths scheme, and English is supported by a range of English packs which cover a range and variety of genre.
Currently, we use specialist schemes for computing (Barefoot), PD&HL, RSHE/PSHE and music.
The structure of the WHSS Curriculum provides a robust framework on which we build deliverable content. The knowledge and skills provide the foundation for the sequential lesson plans and resources within each project.
The long-term WHSS Curriculum plans set out the projects for each year group and term. Projects are organised to maximise meaningful links between subjects, aspects and concepts.
Our bespoke WHSS Bacc recognises that a broad and balanced curriculum is vitally important to help all students fulfil their potential, whatever their educational needs and learning goals. All of our students are entered for the WHSS Bacc on a pathway suited to their skills, needs and talents.
The OCR Life and Living Skills suite of qualifications are available for students at Entry Levels 1 to 3 to support with areas such as moving in to employment, managing and living life and self-development.
Similarly, the AQA unit award scheme offers a unique way to record learner achievement. Its ‘can do’ approach is used to boost student confidence, engagement and motivation.
Curriculum enrichment is also offered to all students in the form of educational trips and visits.
English packs: In the curriculum, each geography and history project is accompanied by an English pack. The English packs aim to give teachers flexible suggestions for delivering their English curriculum within each project. The packs are intended to ignite student’s interest in English, expose them to rich, challenging texts and give them the opportunity to write across a range of genres that link to their learning across the curriculum. The English packs are based on a rigorous, progressive framework of skills. They include ideas for teachers and high-quality, language-rich resources, such as planning frameworks, checklists and model texts across a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry genres that match the age-related expectations for each year group.
Book and novel studies: Along with the English packs, each geography and history project comes with either a book study or a novel study in. Each text comes with comprehension questions and a detailed mark scheme, which focus on the reading content domain. This means students can practise the core reading skills using questions that mirror the end of key stage assessments. Each study comes with a book or novel organiser, which gives an overview of the text and provides useful information about literary devices, the author, characters, settings and plot.
Book lists are included for each WHSS Curriculum project. Book lists enable teachers to quickly resource their classrooms with a range of relevant and challenging fiction and non-fiction texts.
Phonics / Read Write Inc
At WHSS we use Read Write Inc resources throughout school to develop our students phonological skills . Read, write, inc is a systematic way of teaching the sounds of letters and giving students the tools to begin reading and writing. By doing this we help them to open doorways to build their imagination and creativity but most of all we can navigate their learning giving them ownership and pride of their work.
M a s d t i n p g o c k u b f e l h sh r j v y w th z ch qu x ng nk
We teach the first set 1 sounds until a child can read them speedily then separating the sounds and building them back together creating words, e.g.
m-a-t mat… ch-i-n chin. Each sound has a mnemonic to help the child remember e.g. b- boot d- dinosaur, when using the flash cards it is really good to hide the card behind a sheet to get the child to guess which it will be the pure sound or the mnemonic…another way of making learning fun.
Ay ee igh ow oo oo ar or air ir ou oy
Ea oi a-e i-e o-e u-e aw are ur er ow ai oa ew ire ear ure tion cious tious
Once phase 1 sounds are consolidated we move onto phase 2 and 3 even if the child cannot form and write the letter. It is crucial to let them lead their own learning and develop reading and spelling strategies of their own.
Ditty books are introduced in the last section of the phonics one to one tutoring book. They are aimed at using only phase 1 sounds to help and encourage familiarity and repetition.
Get writing books move a child’s curiosity into where their imagination grows and becomes stimulated to build and develop their own ideas, extension work e.g. The Spell…make your own magic potion, Black Hat Bob…create your own treasure map.
The extension work possibilities are endless and can be driven by the enthusiasm of both students and staff.
Fresh Start modules are aimed at comprehension skills, finding and extracting information to answer the questions. Again extension work is key to making it come to life for that individual student.
VIPERS is an acronym to aid the recall of the 6 reading domains as part of the UK’s reading curriculum. They are the key areas which students need to know and understand in order to improve their comprehension of texts.
VIPERS stands for
Sequence or Summarise
The 6 domains focus on the comprehension aspect of reading and not the mechanics: decoding, fluency, prosody etc. As such, VIPERS is not a reading scheme but rather a method of ensuring that teachers ask, and students are familiar with, a range of questions. They allow the teacher to track the type of questions asked and the students’ responses to these which allows for targeted questioning afterwards.
Students will have the opportunity to work towards different qualifications from Year 9 and above. The specifications for these will form the basis of the curriculum.
Step up to English (ELC)
The scheme of assessment allows attainment to be recognised at Entry Levels 1, 2 and 3. All components are made up of externally-set tasks. The Silver Step components cover Entry 1 and Entry 2 and the Gold Step components cover Entry 3.
Component 1: Literacy topics
The aim of this component is to introduce students to literacy skills by:
offering familiar and engaging transactional topics based in the real world structuring the topics so that they can be built up as a module of work over a number of sessions giving students at this level a route into study through the accessible nature of spoken language.
Each topic is based around a theme. Spoken language tasks are offered at the beginning of the topics where students develop the skills they need to tackle the rest of the component through the preparation and delivery of a presentation. Students will read three real-life texts such as adverts, leaflets and webpages and then respond to questions based on these. They will complete one transactional writing task such as writing an email or letter.
Component 2: Creative reading and writing
The aim of this component is to engage students in creative texts and inspire them to write creatively themselves by:
reading two texts which could be fiction or literary non-fiction, writing their own creative text, inspired by the topic they have responded to in reading.
The Reading texts will be literature, literary or literary non-fiction. At Gold Step these texts will be from the 19th, 20th or 21st centuries in order to prepare students for the challenges of GCSE. For Writing, students have a choice of two tasks, which will include a visual prompt and will be related to the topic of the reading texts.
Students will attempt one of the tasks provided by AQA.
Functional Skills Level 1 and 2
The specification are designed to inspire and motivate learners, providing appropriate opportunities to demonstrate their competence in English using real-world situations. The specification will enable learners to develop confidence in English skills, preparing them for progression into employment or further education and for use in their daily lives.
The Reading and Writing sources and stimuli provide learners with real-world situations and texts to engage their interest. The speaking, listening and communicating unit will emphasise the wider benefits that speaking and listening skills have for learners. It allows learners to develop their presentation and discussion skills around topics of their own choice. This will enable the full range of learners to engage in a way that is tailored to their experiences and areas of interest.
Writing tasks give learners the opportunity to produce texts of different lengths and for different audiences, building the skills needed to adapt responses to situations. Questions in reading are designed to truly assess a learner’s ability to understand different texts, using question formats to minimise writing demand.
Learners will be required to engage with a range of straightforward texts on a range of topics. These will be of varying lengths that instruct, describe, explain or persuade.
At Level 2 learners will also need to engage with some complex texts
At Level 1 learners will be required to produce straightforward texts such as narratives, instructions, explanations and reports of varying lengths.
At Level 2 learners will be required to produce straightforward and complex texts such as articles, narratives, explanations and reports of varying lengths.
Speaking, listening and communicating:
At Level 1 learners will need to complete tasks that require them to either respond to or produce narratives, explanations, discussions, instructions, information, descriptions and presentations all of varying lengths.
At Level 2 learners will need to complete tasks that require them to either respond to or produce extended narratives and information (information may be on technical, concrete or abstract topics), discussions, detailed explanations and presentations, all of varying lengths.
GCSE English Language
The specification is designed to inspire and motivate students, providing appropriate stretch and challenge whilst ensuring, as far as possible, that the assessment and texts are accessible to the full range of students.
The specification will enable students of all abilities to develop the skills they need to read, understand and analyse a wide range of different texts covering the 19th, 20th and 21st century time periods as well as to write clearly, coherently and accurately using a range of vocabulary and sentence structures.
Dynamic and engaging content within the specification supports students to explore creative reading and writing. Students will be supported to look at how writers use narrative and descriptive techniques. Writers viewpoints and perspectives will explore how different writers present a similar topic over time.
Our approach to spoken language (previously speaking and listening) will emphasise the importance of the wider benefits that speaking and listening skills have for students.
Throughout the specification students will draw upon a range of texts as reading stimulus and engage with creative as well as real and relevant contexts. Students will have opportunities to develop higher-order reading and critical thinking skills that encourage genuine enquiry into different topics and themes.
This specification will ensure that students can read fluently and write effectively. Students will be able to demonstrate a confident control of Standard English and write grammatically correct sentences, deploying figurative language and analysing texts.
White Rose Maths is an organisation that provides maths resources and Schemes of Learning for students of all ages, from early years to secondary school. The Schemes of Learning (SOL) outline yearly frameworks that break down what our students need to learn during each week of each term to master the learning objectives laid out by the National Curriculum. Resources that are aligned with the White Rose Maths frameworks are designed to be enjoyable, engaging and varied, to help students develop a love of learning and work towards mastery with differentiated resources.
At the heart of their resources and frameworks is the motto “Everyone Can Do Maths: Everyone Can!” — a slogan that we wholeheartedly agree with!
Adopting a White Rose Maths approach to teaching means making sure all students have the same opportunities to learn and the support they need to fully grasp concepts.
The philosophy behind White Rose Maths also focuses on making maths fun for students and helps them to find enjoyment in number problems. Because when students are engaged in learning and enjoying maths, that’s when lessons really sink in and deep learning happens.
Teachers at WHSS use White Rose Maths SOL to plan lessons, choose suitable resources and help students take small steps to progression. The Schemes of Learning make sure topics are introduced to our boys in a logical order and revisited throughout the year to encourage deep learning and ensure they have the foundational knowledge they need, before moving on to more advanced maths concepts and tackling more challenging number problems.
Students will have the opportunity to work towards different qualifications from Year 9 and above. The specifications for these will form the basis of the curriculum.
Entry Level Certificate
The scheme of assessment allows attainment to be recognised at Entry Levels 1, 2 and 3. Students are required to submit for assessment and moderation, evidence from eight components.
The teaching and learning scheme based on this specification will provide opportunities for investigative and practical mathematics as well as leading to mastery of the basic skills of the subject, and will give a worthwhile educational experience for all students.
The component-based structure of the qualification provides students with the opportunity to work in short programmes. This enables their progress to be monitored and a sense of achievement can be gained throughout the course.
The components cover the following areas of Mathematics:
Component 1: properties of number
Component 2: the four operations (calculator not allowed)
Component 3: ratio
Component 4: money
Component 5: the calendar and time
Component 6: measures
Component 7: geometry
Component 8: statistics
Functional Skills Level 1 & 2
The scheme of learning is diverse, engaging and equips learners with the right skills to reach their future destination, whatever that may be.
The scheme allows teachers and students to explore real life contexts together. Everyday mathematics forms the basis of the practical and engaging specification.
The AQA specification in mathematics provides a broad, coherent, satisfying and worthwhile course of study. Students will be encouraged to develop confidence in, and a positive attitude towards, mathematics and to recognise the importance of mathematics in their own lives and to society. The scheme of learning also provides a strong mathematical foundation for students who go on to study mathematics at a higher level post-16.
The AQA specification in mathematics enables students to:
Students will be made aware that mathematics can be used to develop models of real situations and that these models may be more or less effective depending on how the situation has been simplified and the assumptions that have been made. Students will also be afforded opportunities to recall, select and apply mathematical formulae.
The subject content of this specification matches that set out in the Department for Education’s Mathematics GCSE subject content and assessment objectives document.
The science projects in the WHSS Curriculum are sequenced to develop both students’ substantive and declarative knowledge, and if possible, make meaningful links to other projects. For example, in the projects Plant Nutrition and Reproduction and Light and Shadows are taught alongside the design and technology project Greenhouse and the art and design project Beautiful Botanicals. These links allow for students to embed their substantive knowledge in new and often real-life contexts.
The sequencing of projects ensures that our boys have the knowledge and vocabulary to comprehend subsequent projects fully. Each project’s place in the year has also been carefully considered. For example, projects that involve growing plants or observing animals are positioned at a suitable time of year to give our boys the best possible opportunity to make first-hand observations and make use of our nature garden / farm and school environment.
The WHSS Science scheme is based on national curriculum programmes of study.
Science projects have been planned to allow the sequencing of curriculum aspects and concepts, vocabulary and connectivity to be linked with other curriculum subjects
Entry Level Certificate Science
Some students will have the opportunity to work towards an ELC qualification in Science. The scheme of learning will provide the students with the opportunity to develop their interest in, and enthusiasm for, science. They will learn to develop a critical approach to scientific evidence and methods.
During the study students will acquire and apply social skills, knowledge and understanding of working scientifically.
Acquiring scientific skills, knowledge and understanding necessary for progression to further learning and the world of work will be an essential part of the studies.
Cross curricular links will enable the students to apply literacy, numeracy and information technology skills.
This course has two options that include either the certificate after completing 3 components and 3 practical investigations. The diploma consists of 6 components and 6 practical investigations.
The six components studied during the ELC specification meet the Programme of Study Key Stage 4 requirements.
Component 1- Biology: The human body
Component 2 - Biology: Environment, evolution and inheritance
Component 3 - Chemistry: Elements, mixtures and compounds
Component 4 - Chemistry: Chemistry in our world
Component 5 - Physics: Energy, forces and the structure of matter
Component 6 - Physics: Electricity, magnetism and waves
The AQA GCSE Chemistry specification can open up a whole world of opportunities to delve deeper into the substances that matter is composed of and allow you to investigate the reactions and properties of these substances. Students will have the exciting opportunity to look closely at the very molecules, atoms, and ions of life.
Completing study in Chemistry will help to provide students with further knowledge of the core principles of Chemistry and how it has changed our understanding of the world around us. Students will focus on different types of Chemistry and how to apply these in experiments you can undertake in future to make new and ground-breaking discoveries.
Students develop a knowledge and understanding in Chemistry through opportunities for working scientifically. Working scientifically is the sum of all the activities that scientists do.
Cross-curricular links will enable the students to apply literacy, numeracy and information technology skills.
This course is designed to mirror and build on the ELC curriculum components and enhance mathematical skills. Chemistry is the central science and will provide the opportunity for students to access a wide range college courses and complete studies at a higher level.
At WHSS we use Barefoot Computing lessons as the basis for our scheme of learning. The curriculum aims to equip young people with the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to thrive in the digital world of today and the future. The curriculum can be broken down into 3 strands: computer science, information technology and digital literacy.
The projects and resources are designed to teach the students about the use of technology, how to stay safe online as well as programming skills.
The art and design projects are well sequenced to provide a coherent subject scheme that develops student’s skills and knowledge of visual elements, art forms, artists and art movements.
Projects are placed alongside other subject projects where there are opportunities for making meaningful connections. For example, Beautiful Botanicals has been placed in the same teaching sequence as the science project Plant Nutrition and Reproduction.
Seasons are also a consideration for the placement of art and design projects. For example, if students are required to work outdoors, these projects have been placed in either the latter part of the spring or summer term.
In lower school each autumn term begins with the colour project Mix It. The teaching of this project enables students to be introduced to and then revisit colour theory and provides plentiful opportunities for students to explore primary and secondary colours.
Further up the school each autumn term begins with the colour project Contrast and Complement. The teaching of this project enables students to build on their previous understanding of colour and further develop their expertise by studying theory.
In the upper part of school each autumn term begins with the colour project Tints, Tones and Shades. Teaching these projects enables students to build on their previous understanding of colour theory and develop further expertise with colour by studying tonal variations and more complex colour charts.
The WHSS Art and Design scheme is based on national curriculum programmes of study.
Art & Design projects have been planned to allow the sequencing of curriculum aspects and concepts, vocabulary and connectivity to be linked with other curriculum subjects.
The Arts Award
All students will have the opportunity to build a portfolio of evidence to work towards the Bronze Arts Award.
Discrete sessions for all students are delivered by an Outdoor Learning Specialist. Students also have the opportunity to make use of the extensive school grounds and nature garden and farm to access cross curricular lessons. Annual school camps will provide some students with the opportunity to partake in more adventurous outdoor experiences through specialist providers.
All students have the opportunity to gain Duke of Edinburgh Award.
The WHSS Scheme of learning is based on the Getset4pe plans. The lesson plans and schemes of work have been written with careful consideration of the aims of the National Curriculum, to ensure that students are given a wealth of opportunities to develop their physical skills as well as developing the whole child.
Each lesson plan has progressive activities that are designed to inspire and engage the students, allowing them to explore and develop skills and embed knowledge. The lessons are accompanied by supporting resources including resource cards, skills videos and music. Teaching points are provided throughout the scheme to help build subject knowledge and differentiated tasks provide activities with simple changes to appropriately challenge all students.
Activities cover the breadth of the curriculum and include gymnastics, dance and yoga, as well as more traditional games such as tag rugby, cricket and tennis.
The WHSS RSHE /PSHE curriculum is broad and balanced. We use the Coram life SCARF programme of study, a spiral curriculum which is adapted to the needs of our students. The mapping of RSHE/PSHE using these resources helps to ensure we diminish the difference of the gaps in our students learning. Over learning is an important part of our delivery, to make sure students have the opportunity to revisit and build on key learning objectives.
The focus for our students is to ensure they have had opportunities to explore the key aspects of RSHE/PSHE, as set out in our curriculum map.
In KS3, KS4 and KS5 students use the PSHE Association programme of study, to build on the skills learnt previously and to provide them with an education that prepares them for post 16 life. Our curriculum content is carefully chosen to ensure students have the opportunity to access education they may have previously missed, but also build on skills they learn with us at WHSS. As well as this discrete teaching of both PSHE and statutory RSH, our students also experience quality RSHE/PSHE through key working, QOL sessions, weekend provision, our 24-hour curriculum, healthy lifestyles and accredited OCR life and living skills. Specific RSE related issues are also supported by Big Talk Education, who have worked with us at WHSS for several years. The sessions with Big Talk will complement our growing and changing topics, ensuring that all students have the opportunity to receive quality assured, relationships and sex education to help to keep them healthy and safe.
The projects cover six major world religions: Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism.. They are sequenced so that the students’ knowledge of each religion builds over time.
Central to each project is a significant religious festival or celebration. Each project gives students the opportunity to broaden their knowledge and understanding of the significant people, teachings, beliefs and practices of each religion. Student are encouraged to learn and use the correct vocabulary throughout the scheme of learning.
The lesson plans within the projects are clear and well sequenced. They are designed to ensure that an accessible and inclusive curriculum that represents the multi-faith population of both our country and our school is delivered to the students.
The design and technology projects are well sequenced to provide a coherent subject scheme that develops students’ designing, planning, making and evaluating skills.
Each project is based around a design and technology subject focus of structures, mechanisms, cooking and nutrition or textiles. The design and technology curriculum’s electronic systems and IT monitoring and control elements are explicitly taught in our science projects to ensure the links between the subjects are highlighted.
Where possible, meaningful links to other areas of the curriculum have been made. All the projects follow a structure where students are introduced to key concepts and build up knowledge and skills over time, using a more comprehensive range of equipment and building, cutting, joining, finishing and cooking techniques as they progress through school.
Throughout the projects, students are taught to work hygienically and safely.
The WHSS design and technology scheme is based on national curriculum programmes of study.
DT projects allow for the sequencing of curriculum aspects and concepts, vocabulary and connectivity to be linked with other curriculum subjects.
The history projects are well sequenced to provide a coherent subject scheme that develops students’ historical knowledge, skills and subject disciplines. Key aspects and concepts, such as chronology, cause and effect, similarity and difference, significance and hierarchy, are revisited throughout all projects and are developed over time. All projects also develop historical skills based on evidence and historical enquiry.
The choice of historical periods follows the guidance set out in the national curriculum, with specific details relating to significant events and individuals chosen to present a rich and diverse account of British and world history.
Where there are opportunities for making meaningful connections with other projects, history projects are sequenced accordingly. For example, the project Dynamic Dynasties is taught alongside the art and design project Taotie to give students a better all-round understanding of ancient Chinese arts and culture.
The WHSS history scheme is based on the national curriculum programmes of study.
WHSS History projects allow for the sequencing of curriculum aspects and concepts, vocabulary and connectivity to be linked with other curriculum subjects.
Music within the WHSS Curriculum is based on Charanga. The Schemes provide week-by-week lessons for each year group in the school. WHSS have adopted the Original Scheme, which supports all the statutory requirements of the National Curriculum for Music in England.
The Scheme provides teachers with week-by-week lesson support for each learning group in the school. The Scheme provides lesson plans, assessment, clear progression, and engaging and exciting whiteboard resources to support every lesson.
In line with the curriculum for music and guidance from Ofsted, this Scheme moves away from the previous levels and learning objective/outcome concepts to an integrated, practical, exploratory and child-led approach to musical learning.
Each Unit of Work comprises the of strands of musical learning which correspond with the national curriculum for music:
The geography projects are well sequenced to provide a coherent subject scheme that develops students’ geographical knowledge, skills and subject disciplines. Geographical locations are not specified in the national curriculum, so they have been chosen to provide a broad and diverse understanding of the world.
Where there are opportunities for making meaningful connections with other projects, geography projects are sequenced accordingly. For example, students revisit the geography of settlements in the history project School Days after studying types of settlements in the geography project Bright Lights, Big City.
All geography projects are taught in the autumn and spring terms, with opportunities for schools to revisit less secure concepts in the summer term.
The WHSS geography scheme is based on the national curriculum programmes of study.
Geography projects allow for the sequencing of curriculum aspects and concepts, vocabulary and connectivity to be linked with other curriculum subjects.
The WHSS Curriculum projects provide many opportunities to promote the following outcomes:
Spiritual: The opportunity to explore beliefs, experience and faiths, feelings and values; enjoy learning about oneself, others and the surrounding world; use imagination and creativity and reflect on experiences.
Moral: The opportunity to learn what is right and wrong and respect the law; understand consequences; investigate moral and ethical issues and offer reasoned views.
Social: The opportunity to use a range of social skills to participate in the local community and beyond; appreciate diverse viewpoints; participate, volunteer and cooperate; resolve conflict.
Cultural: The opportunity to explore and appreciate cultural influences; appreciate the role of Britain’s parliamentary system; participate in cultural opportunities; understand, accept, respect and celebrate diversity.
The WHSS Curriculum projects provide many opportunities to promote the following outcomes:
Democracy - A system where everyone plays an equal part.
The rule of law - The principle that all people and institutions are subject to and accountable for their actions and behaviour.
Individual liberty - Being free to express views or ideas.
Tolerance and respect - The ability or willingness to respect and tolerate the opinions or behaviours of others.
The school farm and Nature Garden is a key resource in delivering the teaching and learning of Science. All students will be provided with learning opportunities on the school farm / nature garden. All students will have the opportunity to work towards a variety AQA Unit Awards. Some students will have the chance to work towards an AQA Entry Level Science qualification.
Through learning opportunities provided on the Farm /Nature Garden students will be able to develop knowledge that is pertinent to Science with a real-life context.
The Farm / Nature Garden allows the opportunity for students to work collaboratively and practically.
The City and Guilds qualifications in Construction Skills provide our students with an excellent initiation into the world of construction. The students will have the opportunity to gain knowledge and be taught basic skills which will enable them to decide whether construction is the industry in which they would like to work in the future.
There is an emphasis on gaining practical skills. The qualification also promotes the development of wider employment skills, emphasising the importance of appropriate conduct, equipment and dress within a work area, customer service, customer care and safe working practices.
The aims of the scheme of learning are to encourage the development of generic employability skills used within the construction industry. Students will be given the opportunity to learn new skills within construction which they can take into a future career.
Units included in the scheme of learning include:
The studies will also prepare the students for further training within construction.
The programme of learning will give all students the opportunity to experience an insight into both the hospitality and catering industries. Students will learn through both practical and theory lessons. The City and Guilds qualifications in Hospitality Skills provide our students with an excellent initiation into the world of Hospitality.
Units included in the scheme of learning include:
The students will be encouraged to build a portfolio of work as well as carrying out practical tasks and assessments.