Due to the Coronavirus Pandemic and the shutting of schools, this year at Park we will be teaching and learning from the perspective of a Recovery Curriculum which holds a balance between the logistics and need for children to ‘catch up’ from the previous academic year’s curriculum as well as the need to support children in rebuilding their social and communication skills, relationships and overall well-being.
We have taken the decision for children to work through their current year’s curriculum from September. However, wherever a learning concept arises that requires children to use knowledge from their previous curriculum that they have missed, we will build in recovery lessons and combine learning from the ‘missed’ and current curricula to ensure that all learning is sequential and in context.
When some of our children returned before the summer holidays, we noticed that the language, communication and social skills of some children had regressed during the lockdown period. Therefore, we have decided to continue making these areas a key part of our curriculum throughout the school including in our fortnightly CAT day provision. This year our CAT subjects are Drama, Spanish, Music Appreciation, Performance Poetry and Thinking Through Texts with a Philosophy for Children (P4C) approach. We believe that through this additional provision we will be able to support our children to make rapid progress in their language, communication and social skills.
The core of our Recovery Curriculum is the well-being of the children, staff and community. We are aware that on their return to school, some of our children will be suffering from loss, trauma, anxiety and grief. Consequently, a fundamental aspect of our curriculum has to be the well-being and secure positive development of our children. Without this there will be no results that have true meaning and a deep personal value to the child in terms of their preparation for adulthood. In our school provision, we have built in additional time to focus on children’s well-being through specific sessions in PSHE, RE and Collective Worship, including time to discuss and reflect, mindfulness sessions and taught coping strategies. Additionally, through our English curriculum, we have built in three whole-school texts to begin the year with, which are based around emotions and how to process and manage them. We believe that through these whole-school texts, we can encourage conversations across the school and the community about what has happened and how we feel.