DESIGNING A THEMATIC
BASED CURRICULUM

October 2013
George Faux
THIS SESSION
• The basics of our curriculum.

• The really practical steps to set up a similar system:
•
•
•
•
•
•
•

Obje...
A SLIDE OF HISTORY
• Where we were:
• Lowest APS of any Academy in the country.
(20.4)
• Fischer Family trust predictions ...
OBJECTIVES

Ethos and
Standards

Safe and
Secure

Rapid
Literacy and
Numeracy
Progress

Granular
Achievement
OUTCOMES

Single
Teacher

Physical
Space

More Words
Read and
Written

Competency
Framework
FULLY INTEGRATED
CURRICULUM
English

Science

Year 7

History

19 hours a week

Mathematics

Geography

L4L
RE

PE

Year 8...
STRUCTURES
• Tutors get to really know the students.
• The amount of effective feedback is
greatly increased.
• Students h...
5 Year, radical plan to fundamentally
change the chances of our students.
Competency based curriculum
delivering skills no...
SUBJECTS
• Everything except areas which require
practical facilities.
• Learning to learn is paramount.
• Amalgamated thr...
THEMES
Themes run for between 2-4 weeks.
This can involve anything up to 70+
hours of work on a topic.
There is a focus on...
BESPOKE TRACKING SYSTEM
• Expected Progress
• Threshold Assessment
CONTINUUM OF LEARNING
RESOURCED
TEACHERS
• Some existing staff, some middle and primary.
Most important is a blend of skills.
• Staff have extra pastoral ...
RIGOUR
• Expected progress thresholds have been
created for the different competencies based
on students ability when they...
RADICAL CHANGE
• The Academy collapses the curriculum for all students
one day a week and for a week every Half Term. Know...
PRACTICAL ADVICE
• Implementation takes time, ideally
you need a good few months of lead
in.
• Half measures just didn’t c...
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Designing a thematic curriculum, George Faux, Shireland, October 2013

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  • Designing a thematic curriculum, George Faux, Shireland, October 2013

    1. 1. DESIGNING A THEMATIC BASED CURRICULUM October 2013 George Faux
    2. 2. THIS SESSION • The basics of our curriculum. • The really practical steps to set up a similar system: • • • • • • • Objectives What subjects? Profile of Hours Which Teachers? Assessment Themes Rigour • What we have learned five years on.
    3. 3. A SLIDE OF HISTORY • Where we were: • Lowest APS of any Academy in the country. (20.4) • Fischer Family trust predictions of 29% 5A*CEM • 1 Letter that catalysed change. • We knew that only truly radical change would alter our students achievement.
    4. 4. OBJECTIVES Ethos and Standards Safe and Secure Rapid Literacy and Numeracy Progress Granular Achievement
    5. 5. OUTCOMES Single Teacher Physical Space More Words Read and Written Competency Framework
    6. 6. FULLY INTEGRATED CURRICULUM English Science Year 7 History 19 hours a week Mathematics Geography L4L RE PE Year 8 DT 13 hours a week PD Art Science Dance PE Music DT Drama Art Languages ICT Music 6 Teachers Year 9 9 hours a week “My daughter is making fantastic progress in lessons.” “The base has made my son feel really safe and happy” The one teacher model means staff can really know their 15 students. This allows for a fantastic degree of differentiation.
    7. 7. STRUCTURES • Tutors get to really know the students. • The amount of effective feedback is greatly increased. • Students have their own wing of the building, rooms and lunchtimes. • Lots of group work and welfare focus. • High levels of supportive technology.
    8. 8. 5 Year, radical plan to fundamentally change the chances of our students. Competency based curriculum delivering skills not knowledge, skills that allow students to improve rapidly. Ten areas of focus, dealing holistically with all areas of student development. Combined with a pastoral model which helps students to feel safe and secure and allows parents a real relationship.
    9. 9. SUBJECTS • Everything except areas which require practical facilities. • Learning to learn is paramount. • Amalgamated through themes but with all of the essential skills present. • In this model skills are more important than content. • Requires constant communication and CPD.
    10. 10. THEMES Themes run for between 2-4 weeks. This can involve anything up to 70+ hours of work on a topic. There is a focus on quality outcomes. Such as making a film or other large projects. Balance is the key to thematic development. A “Big Write” at the end of every theme. Students write and read twice as much as they previously used to.
    11. 11. BESPOKE TRACKING SYSTEM • Expected Progress • Threshold Assessment
    12. 12. CONTINUUM OF LEARNING
    13. 13. RESOURCED
    14. 14. TEACHERS • Some existing staff, some middle and primary. Most important is a blend of skills. • Staff have extra pastoral and academic responsibilities. • Staff are all given an allowance. • Staff have a reduced timetable. • A subject to liaise with • A literacy to champion for coverage.
    15. 15. RIGOUR • Expected progress thresholds have been created for the different competencies based on students ability when they come in. • Regular SAT and threshold examinations are held at the end of each year. • Joint planning sessions to establish consistency. • Department moderation to validate outcomes.
    16. 16. RADICAL CHANGE • The Academy collapses the curriculum for all students one day a week and for a week every Half Term. Known as Achievement Weeks and Focus Days. • This is applicable for all students, including KS4 and KS5 and rotates round the different days. • For years 7, 8 and 9 these are often ‘Drive Workshops”, mixed year taught to improve students who have fallen behind on self diagnosed competencies. • There are many benefits: in-depth learning, controlled assessments, trips and experiences, staff training.
    17. 17. PRACTICAL ADVICE • Implementation takes time, ideally you need a good few months of lead in. • Half measures just didn’t cut it - bold steps gave the whole project the credibility it needed. • Staff need plenty of planning time in this model.
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