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Ruswarp Church of England Primary School Think for Yourself and Act for Others

Curriculum Intent, Implementation and Impact


Curriculum Intent


Excellence in teaching and learning is at the heart of our school. We offer an exciting, engaging and creative curriculum which inspires and motivates our children. Underpinned by our distinct Christian ethos, we create ‘bursting to tell’ moments which enthuse our children and aim to promote a lifelong love of learning


Ruswarp’s curriculum is rooted in our vision of ‘Think for Yourself and Act for Others’, and based on our school’s Christian Values of: Kindness, Respect, Friendship, Forgiveness and Thankfulness. Through the lens of 'Window, Mirror and Door' we develop children's social, moral, spiritual and cultural understanding. This equips them with the knowledge and confidence to take positive actions and to be  suitably prepared for life in modern Britain. 


At Ruswarp Church of England Primary School, we:


  • Live our school values and develop cultural knowledge, underpinned by a strong Christian ethos,
  • Give children rich, hands-on experiences and celebrate the uniqueness of our local area,
  • Deepen and develop subject knowledge,
  • Inspire passionate readers,
  • Guide and motivate children to become confident, responsible citizens with high aspirations and broad horizons.


Curriculum Implementation

To live our school values


The whole school community chose the Christian values which underpin our school vision and curriculum. These are: Kindness, Respect, Friendship, Forgiveness and Thankfulness. We also recognise that we do not live in a culturally diverse area and therefore we are committed to ensuring our curriculum has key learning opportunities about the wider world and each child’s role within it, particularly in terms of cultural and religious aspects.


We have created a curriculum to develop resilience and independence, both in work and at play. There is a culture within society of children lacking the courage to stand up for what they believe in or what they believe is right. Some children have a tendency to give up easily in the face of adversity, or when faced with challenges - often relying on the intervention of adults. Through curriculum opportunities and teaching, we want to both tackle and support these notions in order to create future adults with strong moral fibre and courage in their convictions.


Our school vision underpins our curriculum and this is reflected in practice, policies and our school environment and is evident within relationships and attitudes. Our curriculum offers learning opportunities and collaborations to support our children in being humble, moral, to think of others, to recognise the strength in others and to be able to identify what part he/she plays in this school, their community and the wider world.

Think for Yourself – We want to teach our children to be strong, independent and resilient – both in the classroom and in the wider world. We want our children to embrace challenges in the classroom and have the ability to persevere and persist with their learning. We want our children to have courage and faith in their own beliefs and convictions and to have the strength to stand against something that isn’t right. We want to help develop children’s moral fibre and equip them for the skills they need to flourish in the 21st Century.  Our school is for those of all faiths and none, but our Christian message is that God will support us.

Act for Others – Based on Christian teachings, we want our children to be kind, respectful and generous. We want children to be thankful and humble and to support their peers. We want our children and staff to recognise their roles and responsibilities within the school community and the wider world.


In Practice


Through collective worship and spirituality days, we have a whole school focus on either the Window, Mirror or Door


This focus underpins our curriculum in the following ways:


Our Mirror

These are the values by which we look at ourselves and reflect how we wish to behave. The core values to focus on will be: Kindness, Respect, Friendship, Forgiveness and Thankfulness. At Ruswarp, these are principles which are embedded into our daily life at school in terms of our conduct and approach to our learning and each other. We link these principles to our Collective Worship, to Bible stories and to our behaviour policy and our rewards system.  Our curriculum will encourage opportunities for spiritual reflection as we teach children how to achieve this.


Our Window

This is how we learn about and how to value the world around us and will base this on our awareness and understanding of the British values of democracy, the rule of law, tolerance and mutual respect and individual liberty. We will focus on how we demonstrate these values in school through our various committees and curriculum, our RSE curriculum, through subject work on anti-discrimination, awareness of other religious celebrations and through our behaviour policy. We will have a programme to incorporate this into Collective Worship with links to Christian teaching and inviting organisations into school.


Our Door 

This is the fundamental value that we find from Christian teachings which makes us want and desire to make a difference to each other and the world and go out ‘via the door’ to make a contribution to society, both in school, at home, nationally and internationally. Our curriculum will focus on our identified Christian Values but also on the key Christian value of love and that we have to love and care enough to make courageous changes for the better. We will provide opportunities for this within our curriculum through charity work, community support and through our curriculum projects and investigations.


Give children rich, hands-on experiences and celebrate the uniqueness of our local area


Whitby and the surrounding area is historically rich and varied. We are in close proximity to the beach, the North Yorkshire moors, Whitby Abbey, and the cobbled-streets of Whitby town. We are proud of this and celebrate it  through incorporating regular educational visits in and around the area. We have a close community of local parents to support us in our ventures and our own mini bus helps us access them.


We are able to draw on local artists, varied geographical features and interesting local history to incorporate into our learning. We want our children to have the best life chances and access to experiences which will open up their minds to the wider world. These experiences are planned for and embraced and begin whole-heartedly in Early Years, as we enrich children’s learning with carefully planned visits and visitors to enhance our curriculum. 


Deepen and develop subject knowledge


Our curriculum is driven by a desire to ensure that knowledge sticks in all subjects. It is carefully and systematically planned in sequences to help our children remember and understand knowledge with confidence to enable them to become more fluent and efficient in their learning.


The knowledge is clearly mapped out across the school, building understanding over time and allowing children to make links between what they are learning.

‘What did I learn in this subject last year? Last month? Last lesson? What skills and knowledge am I learning that will help me in this subject next week? Next year?’.  


Skills are planned to build progressively. End of unit knowledge checks enable children to actively recall knowledge and interweaving this then ensures that knowledge is retained over time. 


High quality CPD in foundation subjects and RE ensures that staff have the knowledge and skills to deliver creative and progressive lessons in the wider curriculum. We have specialist staff to support PE and outdoor learning and subject leaders maintain an overview of standards in their subjects.


Following the disrupted curriculum of 2020-21, we focused on a recovery curriculum. We continue to identify and address gaps in learning through adapting our curriculum, to ensure that our children are able to confidently master the essential skills in all areas. 


Inspiring Passionate Readers


Reading is a fundamental part of our curriculum. We aim to immerse children with books and language on entry; ensuring the EYFS outdoor area has a rich environment of reading spaces and reading opportunities woven throughout. Throughout the school, we carefully select quality class texts to ensure that children are exposed to the best in children’s literature and a full range of genres and both classic texts and more contemporary and modern selections. Texts are planned for and fully embedded into all curriculum areas and are used to enhance and support subject teaching. Texts are selected based on children’s interests, themes and specifically chosen to broaden children’s ranges, language and understanding and to and expose the class to books they would not select from the shelves themselves!


Reading events and challenges are planned through the year in order to raise the profile of reading within school and celebrate it. Each class contains a wealth of texts for children to choose and borrow and this independent reading time is actively encouraged, alongside listening to an adult read in class on a daily basis. All classes have two chosen texts at one time – a text which supports the current literacy focus and a second which is the class text and is being read aloud daily.  


To guide and motivate our children to become confident and responsible citizens


Behaviour in our school is an aspect we pride ourselves on. Our children are taught to make responsible choices, knowing the clear expectations set and exemplified around school. ‘Think for Yourself and Act for Others’ is a clear and consistent starting point when having reflective conversations about behaviour and our school rules. 


Our RSE curriculum has opportunities for children to learn about all aspects of health and relationships.


Our inclusion of safety themes within the curriculum ensure that children are educated about all aspects of safety: Personal, Online, Water, Fire, Road and Rail Safety.


Our curriculum organisation allows and encourages our children the opportunity to become articulate, respectful and confident communicators. Sporting fixtures enable children to compete locally against other schools. Participation in events such as ‘Speak Out’ and the Eskdale Festival ensure children are given a chance to perform in the arts. Performances in school also enable children the opportunity for this.


Our creative curriculum allows us to celebrate individuality and teach our pupils about acceptance. Our programme of Collective Worship, both whole school and class, also promotes Bible teachings and reflection to encourage children to become responsible adults.

Curriculum Impact

To live our school values


  • Children display exemplary behaviour around school and in the community,
  • Children can live out our school values and reflect upon them,
  • Children have an understanding and appreciation of the arts and other religions,
  • Children feel comfortable being themselves and are accepting of others,
  • Children are able to talk about themselves, their beliefs and relationships.


Give children rich, hands-on experiences and celebrate the uniqueness of our local area


  • Children have a good knowledge of our local area and the history of Whitby and how this fits into the wider world,
  • Children leave school with high aspirations and broad horizons and are confident in trying new things, having had a wide range of experiences,
  • Children are courageous advocates and have the confidence to be the change they want to see in the world.  


Deepen and develop subject knowledge


  • Children are motivated and happy learners, with a keen desire and interest in learning and gaining knowledge,
  • Children retain knowledge and vocabulary and use it in work and discussion around subjects taught,
  • Children understand what we are teaching, why we are teaching it and can articulate where the learning ‘fits in’ to previous and future learning,
  • Children's attainment in foundation subjects matches that of R.E, English, Maths and Science,
  • Children's work is high quality, which represents the progressive skills approach of our curriculum.


Inspire Passionate Readers


  • Children have consistently positive attitudes to reading,
  • Children enjoy books and talking about them,
  • Children have experience of a range of authors.


To guide and motivate our children to become confident and responsible citizens


  • Children have high aspirations moving on to secondary school,
  • Children go on to choose a range of foundation subjects in KS3,
  • Children are inspired to take on a leadership role,
  • Children have experiences that prepare them well for later life.

Early Years Foundation Stage


Children in our Foundation Stage and are taught by Mrs Stainthorpe. There is a separate curriculum for the children in this stage of school. It is planned to enable each individual child to explore the world in the ways that best suit them. Our outdoor learning environment is a fantastic resource, which enriches the children’s experiences and provides a lovely start to the children’s learning journey with us.


EYFS is made up from seven areas of learning which are all inter-connected and dependent on each other:


Prime Areas:

  • Communication and language
  • Physical development
  • Personal, social and emotional development


As children grow, the prime areas will help them to develop skills in four specific areas. These are:


  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding the world
  • Expressive arts and design


We believe that children are active learners who learn through their senses, through investigation, experimentation, listening, watching, social interaction, questioning and exploring. Your child is a special and unique individual and will be encouraged to develop their confidence, skills and talents in these early years of education.


If you have any questions regarding the curriculum we teach, please contact the school directly.

The National Curriculum in England