Curriculum Guide

National Curriculum

The National Curriculum, provides pupils with an introduction to the core knowledge that they need to be educated citizens. It aims to embed high standards and create coherence in what is taught in schools nationally.  As well as ensuring that all children are taught the essential knowledge in the key subject disciplines, with ambitious expectations of learning. It is designed to provide children with the essential knowledge, skills and understanding that they require as citizens of Great Britain.

In addition, the National Curriculum provides statutory programmes of study for each subject, stating which content which should be taught to pupils in each stage of learning.

The national curriculum is organised into blocks of years called ‘key stages’ (KS).

Key Stage 1 5 – 7 year olds Year groups 1 and 2
Key Stage 2 7 – 11 year olds Year groups 3, 4, 5 and 6

At the end of each key stage, the children are formally assessed through national standardised tests. These include:

Phonics Screen Year 1
Key Stage 1 Year 2
Multiplication tables check Year 4
Key STage 2 Year 6



The manner in which schools assess learning has changed dramatically.  There is greater focus placed on children being able master the skills that they have been taught rather than merely racing through the curriculum without gaining a secure understanding of what they have learnt.

Although the content has been stipulated by the Government and Statutory Assessments will continue to be prescribed, schools are free to assess the skills acquired in each subject, at each stage of learning, in whatever manner they deem appropriate.

Assessment Policy 2018

We have been urged to ensure that by the time children leave Benhall St Mary’s, they are ‘Secondary ready’. In other words, that they are equipped with the essential knowledge, skills and understanding required for their next stage of learning when they leave our school.

National Curriculum Guides

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

Our Curriculum

At Benhall St. Mary’s Primary, we believe that the curriculum should be taught in a creative, child-led manner. We therefore follow a ‘topic-based’ approach which means that wherever possible, we group our subjects around a theme. We encourage the children to take an active role in this, helping the teacher to plan investigations and activities. Due to the nature and size of the school, topics follow a two year rolling program.

Not all subjects can naturally ‘fit’ within a topic and so these subjects are taught separately, e.g. Religious Education. Not everything in Maths links effectively with a topic either, and so this often runs separately, but links are made whenever possible. Science can lend itself to lots of very engaging topics – animals and plants both offer lots of scope. Other Science areas will be taught discreetly.

English is taught through the Ros Wilson Big Write and Big Read approach. Phonics being taught creatively through Letters & Sounds. We have adopted the Mastery approach to teaching Maths, taking inspiration from Singapore Maths.

RE Schemes of Work


A topic newsletter is sent out to parents termly detailing the areas to be covered that term. These are available below.

Topic Webs

Cycle A

Here There Everywhere
Squirrels Choose the topic using your passions and children’s passions Choose the topic using your passions and children’s passions Choose the topic using your passions and children’s passions
Acorns Me! Mumble vs. Simba Shadows & Shimmers
Oaks Watch Out-They’re Coming! Enchanting Egyptians Who do you think you are?
Woodlands Secret Suffolk The Gods BANG!

Cycle B

Here There Everywhere
Squirrels Choose the topic using your passions and children’s passions Choose the topic using your passions and children’s passions Choose the topic using your passions and children’s passions
Acorns Old McDonald Around the World in 80 Days Brick by Brick
Oaks The Great British Challenge Secrets of South America Nature Detectives
Woodlands Terrible Tudors Long Boats & Ship Burials Extreme Environments

Use with Curriculum Coverage Plan and Topic Web to support rigorous coverage and effective planning.

Helping your child at home

There are lots of ways that you can help your child at home: do make sure, for example, that you read frequently with your child, and support them with the current learning that’s taking place in school by encouraging them to complete and hand in any home-learning on time.


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School Lane, Benhall, Saxmundham, Suffolk IP17 1HE

Headteacher: Katie Jenkins

Email: • Tel: 01728 602407

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