From Year 1 to Year 6 the curriculum is planned using

'Contexts for Learning'.  Each year group has a different context for learning each term, apart from Year 6 who has one context which spans over two terms.  Each context has a broad title where a high value is placed on all subject disciplines.  Each National Curriculum subject area has been rigorously planned into the contexts throughout the school to ensure the progression and entitlement to learning is provided for all pupils. The contexts provide the opportunity for explicit links to be made across the subject areas ensuring an in-depth understanding of the learning. English and Maths are planned for from the Revised National Strategies but are planned for within the context to enrich the learning. The organisation of the contexts for learning provides the opportunities for children of all ability levels to access the learning creatively at an appropriate level and to be successful as learners.

Research shows that children learn more effectively when there are explicit links and connections in their learning.  Children don’t learn in boxes - they learn most effectively when they, themselves, can make links in their learning.  They learn most effectively when their learning is motivating, exciting and connected.  Below are a few quotes from research that show the benefits of children learning in a cross curricular way.


“Schools are good at doing bits of information . . . packaged up in discrete bits for given periods of time . . . They are not so good at doing the joins.  . . . The brain is better at doing connections . . . and will seek to find connections. Learning itself is all about seeking and securing connections. Finding and looking after the joins is what schools should be doing.” Alistair Smith ‘The Brain’s Behind It’


“Content is likely to be retained if it is structured around powerful learning situations that relate to pupils and have meaning in their everyday lives.”  Prof. Maurice Galton




 Geography  Science  History

Rivers – features, flooding, erosion, environmental issues, landscape, local field study, human response to nature,  The River Thames, The River Nile

 Aspects of ‘forces and motion’ (bridges, water force) Building materials and   their properties (bridges) Life processes – river life

A World Study of a past society: Ancient Egypt

RE Art

 D & T

Creation stories / ‘Humans versus Nature’ Human response to nature Barriers and Bridges Stories from Exodus

River life Ancient Egypt The Four Elements Bridge architecture and design

 Bridge structure & design  - workshop, Thames visit


 “ . . . it is important that children have a rich and exciting experience at primary school, learning a wide range of things in a wide range of different ways.”  Excellence and Enjoyment DfES


Left, is an example of a Year 5 context ‘Humans Versus Nature.’ You can see the links between the subjects below.  English, Maths (where possible) ICT and Art are taught through the context and

wherever possible, so is Religious Education.  Where this is not possible the Religious Education area of learning (e.g. Sikhism) may become a mini-context from whih other areas of learning grow.


Children are very positive about learning through contexts for learning and the progress our children make, the  results and learning journeys of each individual, shows the positive impact of this approach to learning. 


Back to contexts for learning Page