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St Andrew's CofE Infant School

‘A happy, balanced and challenging environment’


At St.Andrews CE School we follow the Early Years Foundation Stage and the Key Stage 1 national curriculum for years 1 and 2.  The following gives you information and links  about the curriculum.

Early Years Foundation Stage


In our school our EYFS class is our Reception class, children start in the September in the year in which they turn 5.  The curriculum is based on 17 areas of learning which are broken down into milestones culminating in the Early Learning Goal (ELG).  Children's learning is focussed on three characteristics of effective learning:  playing and exploring, active learning, creative and critical thinking.


Teaching in EYFS is centres on pupils interests, the 17 areas are planned for through a theme, such as 'growing', or centred around a book, activities are planned for inside and out so children can access the 17 areas of learning.  Through skilled questioning teachers take pupils leanring forward guiding them to discover new skills.  Most learning is child initiated a small proportion is teacher led, such as handwriting, letter formation, maths skills, reading and phonics. 


The children have a daily phonics session (see section on phonics) which starts at phase 1/2 or 3 depending on the individuals starting points.


EYFS children learn to read using the books available in school which are banded in colours.

Characteristics of Effective Learning

Characteristics of Effective Learning

Key Stage 1 - Years 1 and 2

At St Andrews CE school we designed a curriculum that focusses on progression of skills and practise of skills in a variety of contexts. Our curriculum centres around learning about our immediate environment (school/village) local environments (Olney/Newport Pagnell/Milton Keynes) Great Britain and the wider world.  By focussing on the same skills and learning intentions but learning different facts and information will support pupils use of skills and application to different contexts and in depth facts and information about local environments and communities broadening out to Great Britain and the wider world, building their 'cultural capital'.

We follow the national curriculum and have end of year expectations that we are all aiming towards.   The cycle centres around themes which incorporate the core subjects of English and science and the wider curriculum.  Maths is discrete, we have introduced 'Power Maths' a maths mastery approach, that all year groups follow, but cross curricular elements are taught where appropriate. Our pupils are excited about the topic themes and gain much from the enriched curriculum through the varied trips, visits and visitors. There are times when we plan learning from pupil interest, local or national occasions i.e. a child returning from a trip abroad/ a child's family celebrations (such as Eid/ Hannukah)/the Royal Wedding/Olympics/Rugby World Cup/Milton Keyne's 50th birthday.  It's important that learning is connected to real events where possible, is up to date, relevant to pupils interests, lively and engaging.


At St Andrews we also love our trips, Warwick Castle, The Science Museum and Birmingham Sealife Centre to name a few!  Along with country walks, forest schools, cooking and visitors there's always plenty of excitement in our learning.


If you require any further information, please get in touch.



Intent-The Village Schools federation is a collaborative group of small, rural village schools with Christian values at its heart.  The intention of our long term curriculum plan is to offer the schools autonomy to plan for the needs of their pupils taking into account their interest, using local communities and environments as starting points and broadening out to the wider local area, to Great Britain and the wider world.  The intent is to plan and teach skills, build on skills, repeat skills, practise skills and commit kills and facts to memory.  The curriculum is planned from the end of year 2 backwards, what do the children need to be able to do to transition to year 3 and what experiences do they need in EYFS to attain the skills at the end of year 1 and subsequently year 2. Each subject policy has it’s own intent, implementation and impact statement from which to create medium term and short term plans.  The intention of our long term plan is to repeat skills taught through broad overarching topic areas which will have different focus’ depending on the children’s needs/ knowledge/experiences/communities.  Our intent is aligned with our vision that children can ‘be the best that they can be, working together as a team’.  The curriculum intention is to inspire learners with exciting content and experiences, to foster curiosity, develop resilience, promote questions and a desire to find answers, to expand knowledge and experience so children can aim high and find joy in learning and enjoying school.  Our intent is to enhance, excite and inspire learners whilst growing together.

Implementation- Through high quality planning, teaching and reviewing of knowledge, skills and vocabulary across all subjects all children will be challenged to be curious, compassionate, courageous and resilient learners.  They will have opportunities to influence their own learning through age appropriate and progressive skills taught through the topics and other pertinent themes.  Characteristics of effective learning, including being active, playing and exploring and creating and thinking critically will drive teaching and learning.

Impact-.  Our children will have skills, knowledge and Christian Values to confidently apply to all aspects of their life.   In short they will learn more, remember more and enjoy more;  spiritually, socially and emotionally the children will be able to move through the continuum of life and education confidently and be ready for the next phase in their school journeys.

Themes - We believe the current themes are all encompassing and allow teachers autonomy to shape the planning to respond to pupils interests, needs, local and wider environments and current affairs such as events locally and globally developing children’s ‘cultural capital’. Themes will allow the federation to share teaching expertise, ideas, extracurricular activities, such as educational visits, and content. 

Planning – The intention of learning is focussed on skills progression – what is the skill being taught, what is the intended outcome? i.e To write with purpose – use time connectives/ To work scientifically – write questions.











People and communities


Buildings and Places


Natural world



Long Term Curriculum plan 2020

Parents Guide to the National Curriculum



Your child starts to learn to read as soon as they start school.  Words are displayed all around and are highlighted throughout the day.  Your child will learn key words initially, cvc word (consonant vowel consonant)  i.e cat, dog, mum etc.  They learn to decode with phonics and learn sight words.  We focus on the first 100 key and tricky words to begin with and increase in line with individual needs.


Your child will bring a book home, these are colour banded, starting with lilac which are books without words so that your child can share the book with you and talk about the story, this is an important stage of reading, knowing the orientation of a book, that stories follow a system of begnning, middle and end, and to engage your child in talking about books.  The books progress from key words, to short sentences all the way up to chapter books.


Please read with your child at home at least 3x a week, research shows that children who are reading and sharing books at home regulalry are more proficient readers at an earlier stage.


We use a variety of schemes including Oxford Reading Tree and other books colour banded.



It is a statuatory requirement for schools to teach systematic synthetic phonics.  The following is an explanation from Oxford Owl and easy to access website with resources and guidance for parents:


When your child is learning to read there are two crucial things to learn:

  • the sounds represented by written letters
  • how to blend the sounds together to make words.

Synthetic Phonics is a way of teaching reading.

Children are taught to read letters or groups of letters by saying the sound(s) they represent – so, they are taught that the letter l sounds like llllll when we say it. Children can then start to read words by blending (synthesising) the sounds together to make a word.

At school, you will probably hear teachers talking about blending , but you might also hear them refer to sounding out or Fred Talk too, depending on which phonic scheme your child’s school is using. All these terms focus on the same point – synthesising sounds .


We use 'Read Write Inc' as a scheme for our  daily lessons for learning sounds, decoding, blending, reading and writing.  It is a powerful scheme which sees children at the end of foundation stage ready for year 1 with a high level of decoding and blending skills.