Babington Academy – Our Curriculum
We are proud of our unique context and the richness this brings to our curriculum offer. We want our students to learn a broad selection of subjects in depth in order to allow them to open doors and grasp hold of their hopes and dreams for the future. Our curriculum is well planned and progressive and seeks to build on the prior knowledge of students, make links and develop their understanding in all areas of their learning whilst addressing the knowledge gaps students may join us with, given the wide range of different starting points our students have from our feeder schools (37 in September 2019 year 7 intake and as many as 56 in previous years). It is our intent that students will build their knowledge, skills and understanding through the study of a knowledge rich, mastery curriculum. Our curriculum has our students and their needs at the heart of it, so that all students leave Babington with the knowledge, skills and confidence to thrive in a challenging and ever changing world. We understand that a curriculum deep in cross curricular links is the best way to make learning ‘stick’ for students and to support them in transferring all that they learn into long-term memory. It is because of this that our middle leaders worked closely together at the design stage to map out the links that there are across subjects and work to review and update this regularly.
At KS4 students are offered a free choice of courses alongside their core offer and are well-supported to make informed and ambitious decisions by members of SLT. Students who require extra support with their learning do so in mainstream lessons and our DSP students are all integrated into the mainstream curriculum and supported where required to be successful. For our most vulnerable students we offer a nurture curriculum which is offered on a stage not age basis and is driven with a keen literacy focus.
We feel strongly that it is our moral responsibility to offer our students opportunities beyond the traditional classroom curriculum and see that whilst we are building knowledge in lessons it is of equal importance to build cultural capital and a character for learning. Because of this, opportunities to build knowledge, cultural capital and character for learning are all carefully planned into our LTP, MTP and STP. We also, on a fortnightly basis, have an afternoon where students follow individualised, personally chosen courses for Loving Learning Something New where students learn to love learning by learning how to become totally engrossed and lost in learning. These courses also offer students the opportunity to experience opportunities that perhaps lie outside the traditional curriculum but are vital to building the cultural capital students need to have to succeed in life. The well-being of our students is at the core of all we do and because of this our well-being curriculum is taught by all staff in designated time on a weekly basis, this allows us a depth of time to concentrate on a wide range of issues from topical debates using ‘Votes 4 Schools’ to the Prevent agenda and British values.
It is our intention that students are empowered through our rich, broad and balanced curriculum to make ambitious choices at Post-16 and to unlock a successful future regardless of their starting point or background and support is in place for all students in this process.
There is a consistent approach to the implementation of our Curriculum at Babington. We ensure that all teachers are focussed on building the knowledge, skills and understanding of our students and that they do so in three clear learning phases:
Discover – During this stage of implementation students identify the knowledge they will need to learn to be successful in this learning stage. They will decide what prior learning they need to look back on to support them and what links there might be to other subjects. At this point students will also be shown the ‘big picture’ to their learning and why it is they need to acquire this new knowledge.
Delve – This is the stage of implementation where teachers are supporting students to learn new knowledge through a series of different tasks. It is here where resilience is tested in our students and where they should be encouraged to think deeply and to work hard to learn new concepts and ideas.
Demonstrate – At this stage of implementation teachers ask students to demonstrate the learning that has taken place. Put simply, we will ask students to apply the knowledge they have acquired, during the learning stage, independently.
The impact of our curriculum is measured through the external examination results of all of our students, many of whose results do not feature in performance table information. We believe that it is important to look at how the curriculum has had an impact on everyone we teach, regardless of their starting point. The impact of each medium term plan is monitored by our faculty and subject leaders who check student outcomes against the intended impact outlined in the medium term plan. We track the progress and attainment of our students through the monitoring of learning statements, teachers identify what students know, can do and understand using Go4Schools which allows for transparency in approach across the entire school. Our use of personalised learning checklists and, in some areas of the school, question level analysis ensure that when required intervention can be targeted at precise and specific knowledge gaps to ensure that all students achieve their potential. Progression from each schema is clearly identified across the schemata of the school and our cross curricular planning ensures that this progression is not just mapped as linear across one subject but includes progression points to other subjects too. The detailed QA schedule checks the impact of the curriculum through a wide range of activities which allow all aspects of learning to be evaluated, one example of this is our Intent to Implement weeks where we speak to teachers about the intention of a lesson before observing the implementation of that lesson and evaluating how successfully the intention is implemented and how well students take learn the intended knowledge. It is key for us that our students leave Babington with the emotional and intellectual literacy to be effective and active global citizens who have qualifications which give them choices alongside a desire to be life-long learners.
Below are links to the different curriculum areas which are split into key faculty areas.
To find out more information regarding the curriculum at Babington, please contact:
Fiona Addison - Vice Principal
Tel: 0116 2221616