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The Primary Curriculum
“The national curriculum provides an outline of core knowledge around which teachers can develop exciting and stimulating lessons to promote the development of pupils’ knowledge, understanding and skills as part of the wider school curriculum.” 
The Primary National Curriculum in England

At Horsforth Featherbank Primary School we have worked together using the new framework for the National Curriculum in England to plan a curriculum that is enquiry and skills based, developing and expanding the core knowledge that is set out in the 2014 national curriculum.  It reflects the needs and interests of our children and is often inspired by those needs and interests.  It is, by its nature, an evolving and flexible curriculum, that provides a progressive development of skills and knowledge, and seeks to build on the prior knowledge and learning of the pupils at our school.  All pupils should be excited by the learning opportunities the curriculum provides, and be enabled to make good progress in an inclusive, nurturing and stimulating environment.  We seek to develop opportunities for pupils to become independent, take risks and be curious about the world they live in so that they will all become happy, successful and confident learners.


 Featherbank Primary School Curriculum Intent


 Featherbank Primary School’s curriculum is inspiring

Through a variety of approaches, which include theme days, educational visits, practical and real life experiences and outdoor learning, in our school and the local environment, teachers plan activities that engage and stimulate children’s learning whilst enriching the curriculum content in a creative, stimulating way.


 Featherbank Primary School’s curriculum is empowering

Children are taught to be effective, independent learners who develop growth mind sets. This enables them to develop the resilience needed to be intrigued by their mistakes and enjoy challenge, whilst fostering a life-long love of learning.


 Featherbank Primary School’s curriculum is child-centred

Where possible (and particularly in Early Years) teachers plan learning experiences that reflect the children’s own experiences and interests. Children are encouraged to take ownership of their learning and work proactively to drive their critical thinking skills. We encourage children to be curious about every aspect of the curriculum, and use questioning to deepen their understanding.


 Featherbank Primary School’s curriculum is challenging

At Featherbank, we believe that every child can learn and so we use appropriate challenge to enable every child to grow and progress in a  language-rich environment. Children develop positive attitudes towards learning and are always eager to succeed and become the best learners that they can be.


 Featherbank Primary School’s curriculum is inclusive

Featherbank Primary School is a highly inclusive mainstream school that caters for a diverse range of backgrounds, needs and abilities. In order to achieve our vision: “Every child safe, every child happy, every child growing”, we have worked hard to design a curriculum that meets the needs of all our pupils, regardless of any barriers to learning they may have.


 Featherbank Primary School’s curriculum is nurturing

Our PHSE curriculum allows children to explore issues and feelings in a safe environment. They learn how to keep themselves healthy (physically and emotionally), safe (in the real world and the digital world) and understand how to respect the views and beliefs of others. Our dedicated staff team provide strong pastoral support for all children and this provision is further strengthened by the introduction of our new Learning Mentor.


 Featherbank Primary School’s curriculum is community-inspired

Here at Featherbank, we have a secure understanding of the need to work in close partnership with the children’s families and the local community in order to enhance our curriculum further. We aim to ensure that children develop a sound understanding of themselves and their place in the world around them, and we aspire to prepare them to be active citizens in adulthood.


 Featherbank Primary School’s curriculum is fun

Above all, we want our children to enjoy school and make the most of every opportunity given to them. We love nothing better than seeing happy, smiling faces and know that our very best learning comes from enjoying what we do. We know that our fun, engaging and interactive learning activities make Featherbank a place where everyone grows together and creates happy memories.

Below is a table showing the starting points for each term’s work in our school.  It should be noted, however, that it may be subject to change dependent upon the needs and interests of the pupils in each class. Where possible, all learning is taught thematically:-






Year R


Once upon a time . . .

All creatures great & small

Reception follow the EYFS Curriculum: Development Matters: The topics studied are based on children’s interests but the 3 topics listed above serve as a starting point to inspire & engage.

Year 1

Home Sweet Home

History: Significant local person & event from History (First settlers to Horsforth)

Geography: Local study of school & surrounding local area

Identifying physical & human Location features (e.g desert, rivers, churches etc.)

Observe and describe weather, seasons and changes across the school year.

Science: Plants - identify and name a variety of common deciduous and evergreen trees and a variety of common wild and garden plants; identify and describe the basic structure of a tree & flowering plants.

Animals, including humans - human body; senses - identify the part of the body is associated with each sense.


Seasonal changes - observe and describe weather, seasons and changes across the year

Back to the future . . .

History: Changes from living memory

(1910 – present) Food, Homes, Technology, Transport, Clothes, Toys

Significant local person from History (Louis Le Prince – made first film – link to watching clips of film from each decade) (Henry Moore, David Hockney, John Hoyland – Yorkshire artists)

Geography: Identify seasonal and daily weather patterns in the UK

Science: Seasonal changes - observe and describe weather, seasons and changes across the year.

Plants - identify and name a variety of common wild & garden plants; I can identify and describe the basic structure of a variety of common flowering plants, including trees.


All creatures great & small

History: Significant local person from History (James Herriot – Yorkshire Vet)

Geography: Identify seasonal and daily weather patterns in the UK

Science: Seasonal changes - observe and describe weather, seasons and changes across

Animals, including humans - Identify, name draw and label the basic parts of the human body

Identify and name a variety of common animals that are carnivores, herbivores and omnivores.

Identify and name a variety of common animals including fish, amphibians, reptiles; describe and compare the structure of a variety of common animals (fish, amphibians, reptiles)

Year 2


History: Significant global person & event

from History (Grace Darling)

Geography: Labelling the world (1)– Mapwork /atlases/compasses (including tropical vs polar weather conditions)

Science: Living things and their habitat -


Out of this world

History: Significant global person & event from History (Neil Armstrong)

Science: Materials - use of everyday materials; changing solid; famous inventor

Into the wild

Geography: Small area of UK & Non Europe: compare & contrast physical & human features (Africa)

Science: Living things and their habitat - animals suited to their habitat;

food chains; living, dead, never been alive

Incredible India

Geography: Identify physical & human features

Science: Animals including humans - basic needs; animals and offspring

Wriggle & crawl

Science: Plants - growing plants; observe and describe; what do plants need to survive

Towers, turrets & tunnels

History: Queen Elizabeth

Science: Animals including humans - health and hygiene; human needs

Year 3

Walk like an Egyptian

History: Ancient Civilisations (Ancient Egypt)

Geography: Locational knowledge, including map skills

Science: Light; animals and the human skeleton

Crack, bang, boom!

Geography: Mountains, Volcanoes & Earthquakes; map skills (inc. atlas, globe, compass etc)

Science: Rocks

Vicious Vikings

History: Vikings

Geography: Settlements/land use/trade & natural resources – link to Viking settlements

Science: Plants

Year 4

The birth of a nation

The dawn of civilisation

History: Stone Age

Geography: Rivers & Water cycles

Science: Animals inc. humans – Teeth, digestion, foodchains. Living things & their habitats

The Age Of Enlightenment

History: The Renaissance

Geography: Rivers & canals

Science: States of matter

History: Anglo-saxons

Geography: Labelling UK (inc. human & physical changes over time) Map skills

Science: Sound

History: Vikings

Geography: Seas, rivers, navigation, maps, compasses

Science: Electricity


Year 5

It’s all Greek to me!

History: Ancient Greece

Geography: map skills

Science: Animals inc. humans - Human Development

Living things & their habitats - Life Cycles & Reproduction


The Great Golden Age

History: World History (Early Islam) History of Baghdad; ancient Medicine and Science; Islamic Influence in Modern Day Britain

Geography: Map Skills

Science: Earth & Space; Materials

Around the world in 80 days

Geography: Location compare & contrast x3 (UK/Europe/USA)

Map skills (Equator/tropic lines/latitude/longitude/time zones

Physical Geography – climate zones/biomes/ vegetation belts

Science: Forces & magnets

Year 6

My way or the highway!

History: Post 1066 local history study - Kirkstall Abbey (inc. Henry VIII’s reign and how his decisions affected British history; dissolution of the monasteries and the reformation Elizabeth I)

Geography: map skills

Science: Animals including humans – Circulatory system; Living things and their habitats - classification


Britain at War

History: WW1/2 and other significant world conflicts

Geography: Labelling the world (Europe/America)

Countries/major cities/environments; map skills

Science: Animals Inc Humans (Health aspects: diet, exercise, drugs)

Evolution and inheritance

Crime & Punishment

History: Crime and punishment through the ages

Science: Light; Electricity


Teachers’ medium term plans will show the specific subject knowledge covered and the areas of the national curriculum covered.  Information from these will be shared on the class pages of our website.


RE and PSHE are taught as part of our curriculum and we provide a daily act of collective worship as is required by all maintained schools in England.


Please see the links below for more information regarding the individual subjects that are joined thematically in our curriculum. If you have any questions regarding the curriculum we teach, please contact the school directly.