Raising aspirations so every child can spread their wings and fly!



Curriculum Intent at The Wings’ CE Trust

  • To ensure our children develop spiritually, morally, socially and culturally as part of our Church School communities.
  • To ensure our curriculum provides opportunities to prepare pupils to aim high and ‘spread their wings and fly’
  • To ensure pupils support the most vulnerable within their communities
  • To teach pupils to work cooperatively with others, to respect others and to act with integrity
  • To ensure pupils have access to outdoor learning and green open spaces
  • To ensure pupils have the essential learning skills of literacy, numeracy and information and communication technology.
  • To ensure pupils are creative, resourceful and able to identify and solve problems and have enquiring minds and think for themselves, to process information, reason, question and evaluate
  • To prepare pupils for life in modern Britain


Why does our curriculum look like it does?

We embrace the December 2018 Ofsted guidance on effective curriculum design:

  • the importance of subjects as individual disciplines
  • using the curriculum to address disadvantage and provide equality of opportunity
  • regular curriculum review
  • using the curriculum as the progression model
  • intelligent use of assessment to inform curriculum design
  • retrieval of core knowledge baked into the curriculum
  • distributed curriculum leadership

Our approach is like this:

  • Because we know that many of the children in our schools have limited access to outdoor/natural spaces
  • Because research says that children learn best when they are excited about what they are learning
  • Because research tells us that children learn best when they make real life, relevant, contextual links
  • Because research tells us that ‘deep/profound learning’ takes place when pupils are challenged through higher order thinkingproblem solving, independent learning and by having ownership over their own learning
  • Because research tells us that children learn best through practical experiences



  • By taking K&U/breadth of study from the National Curriculum
  • By developing exciting ‘contexts for learning’ that provide opportunities to link subject areas, whilst ensuring the ‘knowledge’ required of pupils for each subject is explicitly taught
  • By planning lots of opportunities for a visit or visitor in order to make learning relevant and exciting
  • By paying attention to not only WHAT KNOWLEDGE pupils are learning, but HOW they learn
  • By ensuring Assessment for Learning principles are embedded throughout our curriculum and that learning begins with establishing what pupils already know

What does it look like?

The curriculum organisation:

  • Is 3-dimensional; organised as both cross-curricular and through blocks of time. This is particularly useful where subjects do not naturally ‘link’ and so are delivered as a ‘stand-alone’ block to ensure the subject does not become tenuously linked. The timetable has daily English/maths and blocked ‘CFL’ (CONTEXT FOR LEARNING) sessions. The CFL may last anywhere between a day, up to a half term.
  • Begins with learning objectives which are taken from the National Curriculum.
  • Ensures learning opportunities are provided in all areas of the school-outdoors, allotment, ‘Learning Stations’, visits etc. We call this ‘stealth learning’; where pupils are immersed in learning wherever they may be in school.
  • Provides opportunities for continuous provision in Lower Primary are present via a differentiated timetable dependent on pupil need
  • Is taught via a two-yearly cycle for EYFS, Lower Primary, Middle Primary and Upper Primary and planned using a ‘phase approach’.
  • Ensures each CFL begins with a ‘wow’ stimulus or problem etc, and utilises ‘Learning tools’ such as Thinking Hats, Thinkers Keys, Market Place etc wherever possible.  It completes with an end product such as a presentation, artefact, display, written piece. The KWHL is re-visited at the end to add new learning as part of our approach to the gathering of assessment evidence



Long term planning is organised using each year group’s ‘Context for Learning Overview Document’ which details:

  1. the learning objectives for each subject covered in each context taken from the NC document
  2. the context for learning for each term
  3. the ‘outcome’ i.e. presentation, book, museum artefact etc.

This document is reviewed every two years.

 NB: some areas of learning are taught discreetly as a ‘stand alone’ rather than tenuously linking in with the context. Literacy and Numeracy Long term plans follow NNS/NLS guidelines. RE planning follows the Blackburn Diocese Scheme of work.



Planning for medium term is two-fold:

a)     Teacher led planning which lists the ‘I cans’/WALTS/Learning objectives

b)    Child led planning via a KWHL diagram (where pupils identify what they already know, want to learn and how they will find out and what they have learned) produced by the pupils and teacher in each class as a whole class activity.  These are then copied and stuck in pupil’s books. This complements our AFL strategies and helps teachers ascertain pupil’s existing learning in this area ensuring the context for learning is relevant and interesting to pupils whilst also giving pupils a sense of ownership of what they are learning. 



Assessments for English/maths are held three times a year during. The results of these are discussed during Progress meetings where pupil tracking data, targets, ‘Barriers to Learning Analysis’ and ways forward are discussed.

Assessments for other subjects are ongoing, resulting in an end of year judgement for each area of the subject covered as per the assessment grid.

Formative Assessment:

  • Various AFL strategies
  • Our feedback policy was developed as part of a DfE research project on reducing teacher workload. It involves staff identifying if pupils need either a ‘fix-it’ or ‘stretch-it’ (see policy for further details)

Summative Assessment:

Maths: White Rose Assessments/past SATs tests

English: NFER tests are used for Reading (previous SATs in Y2 & Y6), Pupil’s workbooks are used to inform a teacher assessment of writing, speaking and listening is assessed using teacher assessment.

Other subjects: Assessment grids have been developed to support staff in assessing subjects other than maths/English. We have also developed our own tracker in partnership with the LA on SIMS so that we can perform data analysis of all subjects. This also helps identify gaps in learning for pupils in subjects other than English/maths.

Evidence of summative assessment in other subjects:

Staff make assessment judgements based on evidence from the following sources:

  • Staff evaluations on planning completed after each lesson
  • Lists on planning of children who are observed by staff to have exceeded/ not met the age related expectation
  • At the end of the CFL, the pupils re-visit their KWHL to add their newly acquired learning
  • At the end of each unit of work, a summative assessment is completed by the teacher. This can be presented in a variety of ways to pupils including:

-‘checklist’ eg can children switch on/off a computer

-quick quiz/assessment test (written or oral)

-activity planned to measure knowledge

-work in books/floor books


Staff from each school attend the following types of moderation activity for English and maths:

  • Within own school moderation
  • MAT wide moderation
  • Consortia moderation
  • LA moderation

For moderation of other subjects, we have an annual moderation event across all schools in our Trust for class teachers and subject leaders.

Curriculum Leadership

Improvement planning

Each subject area has a working party led by a subject leader which meets half termly to drive forward school improvement priorities

Across the MAT curriculum leads meet half termly to share good practice, share research and drive forward whole MAT priorities

Self-evaluation: measuring curriculum impact

  • Regular subject leader meetings are held across the trust where senior leaders work with subject leaders to monitor the impact of the curriculum.
  • An annual ‘evaluative statement’ is written by subject leaders in each school on an annual basis which identifies WWW/EBI to inform the SEF/SIP
  • Progress meetings are held termly to monitor pupil outcomes

Other relevant policies and documents:

  1. Assessment policy
  2. Feedback policy
  3. SEND policy
  4. Progress Meeting Toolkit
  5. School Improvement and Self-evaluation Toolkit
  6. Monitoring plan (termly planned and organic)
  7. Headteacher Impact statements
  8. CEO reports


CFL 2020-22 EYFS & Reception

CFL 2020-22 Year 1 & Year 2

CFL 2020-22 Year 3 & Year 4

CFL 2020-22 Year 5 & Year 6

At present our PSHE & C curriculum is taught via a cross curricular approach through all subject areas, however, we have a working group whose aim is to develop a curriculum which will be taught discreetly for an hour a week by September 2020. The schools' intent is to enable all pupils to acquire knowledge and be equipped with the skills to develop their own personal understanding, to manage their lives now and in the ever changing world we live in, through a developmental programme of learning for PSHE & C.


Reading at St Mark’s

Questions for Reading at Home

Tips for Home Reading & Phonics

Tricky Word List

'Robot Arms' demonstrated

by a Reception pupil

At St Mark’s we want all children to read with enjoyment, confidence and fluency. In order to do this we ensure that pupils:

  • have access to high quality texts from stories, to non fiction and poetry
  • have opportunities to listen to others reading to them
  • learn to read using systematic synthetic phonics from the very start of Reception


Every child at St Mark’s school takes part in daily phonics lessons from Reception up to Year 2. In these lessons pupils are taught about the sounds that make up words and the letters we use to represent these sounds. Pupils are taught to segment and blend. Segmenting a word is when you break the word down so cat becomes c-a-t. We also call this sounding out. Blending is when we put a word back together so c-a-t becomes cat. In school we use ‘robot arms’ to help us segment and blend. Watch the video below to see ‘robot arms’ in action.

Key Words
There are some words which are tricky to sound out. We call these Tricky Words or Key Words. We practice recognising these as whole words. Your child may bring tricky words home to learn. A list of tricky words is also available on this page.

Reading Books
Each child at St Mark’s school has a reading book which they take home. Reading this book with your child each night is a great way to help them practice their letters and sounds as well as helping them to understanding the meaning of a text. Every book your chid reads will have opportunities for them to practice segmenting and blending,recognising tricky words as well as having some sort of meaning attached to the words. By asking your child questions about the book they are reading you can really help to develop their understanding of comprehension as well as extending their vocabulary. Please see the guidance on questions you can ask at home which is available on this page.

Reading Schemes
At St Mark’s CE Primary school pupils have access to lots of quality and enjoyable picture books including stories, non fiction, ebooks and poetry. In addition to this, pupils also have access to a number of books from the following reading schemes:

Guided Reading: Collins Big Cat Readers
KS1 Home Readers: Oxford Reading Tree Phonics, Oxford Reading Tree Traditional Tales, New Way and Oxford Literacy Web
KS2 Home Readers: Tree Tops, Oxford Literacy Web, Cambridge Reading, All Aboard, Nelson and Penguin


Repetition is a great way for children to engage with and enjoy books. Re-reading favourite stories, poems and rhymes really helps pupils to understand and enjoy patterns of language.

Guided Reading


In Reception and KS1, children access guided reading three times a week. Each day an adult works alongside a small group to teach/model a range of reading skills at their phonic/reading ability:

Day One-Decoding-blending and segmenting/New Vocabulary/Spelling patterns

Day Two-Prosody-Focusing on intonation and punctuation

Day Three-Comprehension-use understanding, retrieval and inference skills.


In KS2, each child has a guided reading session at least once a week. This is where an adult teaches your child, within a small group, about specific reading skills. This may be how to read for meaning and answer questions based on the text. Throughout KS2, the APE model is used: Answer/Prove/Explain. These sessions help your child to apply their reading skills and develop their comprehension skills. Also within the KS2 guided reading cycle, children will have the opportunity to:

  • KS2-Pre-Read-Reading an extract prior to analysing with the teacher. Children will look for any words they may not understand or words/phrases that they like.
  • Comprehension task-Within this activity, children will use their retrieval and inference skills to show that they have an understanding of the text.
  • Personal Choice Reading-Children will have the opportunity to read for pleasure a book of their choice

Shared Reading
Pupils take part in shared reading on a daily basis. This is where large groups of children read a text with an adult. Reading may be modelled to the children or the children may read the text together. It is another opportunity for pupils to apply their phonic and comprehension skills.

Library Timetable
In Reception and KS1 pupils can come with an adult to borrow books from our library. Library opening times are: Monday – Wednesday from 8:45am. In KS2 each class has its own library shelf. Pupils can borrow a book from school if they ask an adult in the classroom.
Wigan Library also has a fantastic range of books for children and families to enjoy for free. For more details contact Wigan Library on: 01942 827621

Click below to see what your child will be learning about in reading this year:

Year 1 Year 2
Year 3 Year 4
Year 5 Year 6


Feedback Toolkit

Teaching & Learning Policy

Planning for Progression Overview


If you would like to find out more about our curriculum, make an appointment with your child's teacher and we would be pleased to discuss our curriculum further.