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Teaching & Learning

Overall Curriculum Intent

Curriculum Intent

At High Hazels Primary Academy we are determined that every child, regardless of background, will achieve their very best. Our aim is to provide an excellent education for all our students; an education which brings out the best in them, gives them a strong understanding of the world around them and prepares them for success in later life. 

Our curriculum is designed to provide children with the core knowledge they need for success in the next stage of education, to maximise their cognitive development, to develop the whole person and their individual talents and to allow all children to become active and economically self-sufficient citizens. We want our pupils to be both interesting and interested with strong morals, emotional intelligence and integrity.

The design of our wider curriculum is based on the research findings of cognitive science. By the time learners have left High Hazels Primary Academy, they will have mastered a range of both procedural knowledge (skills) and factual knowledge through repeated low stakes quizzing; opportunities to deliberately practice and apply what they have learned through careful planning for progression and depth. Our curriculum is customised to meet the local needs of our learners.  

Our curriculum is based on the following key principles:

Entitlement - All our pupils have the right to learn what is in the High Hazels Primary Academy Curriculum.

Coherence: Taking the National Curriculum as its starting point, our curriculum is carefully sequenced so that powerful knowledge builds term by term and year by year. We make meaningful connections within subjects and between subjects.

Mastery: We ensure that foundational knowledge, skills, and concepts are secure before moving on. Pupil's revisit prior learning and apply their understanding in new contexts.

Representation: All pupils are able to see themselves reflected positively in our curriculum; we want our curriculum to open up new worlds – to expose children to beliefs, people, places and values that they would not otherwise encounter and also to the voices of people whose voices have not always been heard.

Education with character: Our ‘hidden’ curriculum teaches our young people about creativity and resilience as well as providing them with opportunities to learn about teamwork, to care and to serve, to overcome difficulties and to manage themselves and their feelings. High Hazels children are taught to have confidence and articulacy so that they can stand up for themselves and for what is right. These personal qualities and skills are the opportunities we provide beyond the classroom; in sport, music, performance, clubs, in chances to lead and take responsibility and in opportunities to volunteer and to serve.

Vocabulary and Cultural Literacy - the curriculum has a core focus on vocabulary development within and across subjects. Our curriculum gives pupils access to the ‘best that has been thought and said’.

Subject-Based Learning - The curriculum incorporates the rigour of subject substantive knowledge. Therefore, it is based on individual subject learning. Links across subjects are made where appropriate, but the curriculum is planned so that it doesn’t sacrifice subject identity and progression for cross-curricular links. 

Subject Content - The overall content of individual subjects is structured as a narrative over time. Individual lessons build into coherent units of work which in turn, contribute to the overall content arc. 

Cultural Capital – Cultural Capital is planned for in all areas of our school life. Pupils are exposed to a wide variety of subject areas and arts; promoting character-building qualities that lead to creating well-rounded, global citizens which will enable them to interact with others leading to meaningful qualifications that will open up doors to paths in later life.



For each curriculum subject, teachers plan the following: 

  • A pre learning quiz which takes place at least one week before the new learning is delivered which identifies gaps in prior knowledge that is needed to fully access the current learning.
  • Gap teaching following the outcomes of the pre learning quiz.
  • Pre teaching key vocabulary and concepts for SEND pupils.
  • A knowledge organiser outlining the substantive and disciplinary knowledge, including vocabulary and the correct definition, that all children must master. 
  • A cycle of lessons for each subject, which carefully plans for progression and depth. 
  • A low stakes quiz which is tested regularly to support learners’ ability to block learning and increase space in the working memory. 
  • Educational visits, visiting experts and artifacts that will enhance the learning experience.  
  • Classroom working walls which detail; current, prior and future learning, the substantive and disciplinary knowledge children will learn, key vocabulary with definitions, and the vertical concept the area of learning falls within. 


Following Rosenshine’s Principles of Instruction, retrieval practices are embedded across the curriculum as a teaching tool to ensure children know and remember more. We also use this teaching tool as a method of assessment.

Daily/Weekly retrieval practices are used every lesson to review prior learning. This may be used at the start of the lesson in the form of a quadrant, cherry picking or Fast 5. It might also be done through a paired/Kagan discussion. Reviews are also be used throughout the lesson as a mini plenary or as an exit task. This is embedded practice throughout school and demonstrates how well children can remember and recall key knowledge. It also enables teachers to identify gaps in knowledge and/or address misconceptions with in the moment feedback.

Spaced retrieval is used in a similar way to the daily and weekly tasks however a longer period of time is left before asking children to recall knowledge. A Brain Cranium (small quiz) can be used mid topic to assess progress so far. Progress is demonstrated by children knowing and remembering more  and by them being able to keep up with the demands of the curriculum.

Post Learning quizzes are used at the end of the unit. The purpose of these quizzes is to assess how much key knowledge the children have remembered. The questions focus on the knowledge children can remember and not the activities completed. Post learning quizzes allow teachers to identify any gaps in knowledge and ensure appropriate children are targeted for support.

SEND children are assessed in the same way however their barriers are removed. For example, if a child’s specific needs relate to writing, they may have a scribe/multiple choice to help them answer the same questions as the other children.  Additional time may be given; breaks and smaller TLC groups used for testing which is our everyday practice for children with identified needs.

Children working 2 years or more below their chronological age are tracked using our A2E progress tracker and next steps planned for bespoke provision or small group sessions. This helps SEND pupils achieve in line with their personalised trajectory from their starting points.  Our curriculum is ambitious and challenging for all children.

Formative assessments are used as ongoing assessment tool. These opportunities throughout the lesson allow teachers to identify gaps in knowledge, misconceptions and where knowledge may not be embedded. Teachers use in the moment feedback and adaptations to planning to address these as they arise.

Our curriculum is both ambitious and challenging. If children are able to keep up with the demands of their lessons, they will make progress.









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