Curriculum Statement

Learning @ Brockwell

This statement gives some information regarding each curriculum area. Our year group pages also provide a year group curriculum map, learning challenges, knowledge organisers and much more.

Parents and other members of public can find out more about our curriculum by contacting us with a question or arranging to come and talk to our Subject Leaders or Headteacher.



Our relevant curriculum gives children inspirational learning experiences.  Children are hooked at the start of their learning by a memorable stimulus before learning challenges further develop curiosity and core skills.  Whole class books inspire the writing process – ‘Hook and a Book’ – and often have links to other curriculum areas, especially humanities and personal development. Humanities, Art, RE and Science are driven by a Learning Challenge Curriculum. Opportunities to develop personal and social skills through physical exercise and exploration are a routine feature of the curriculum. ELSA (Emotional Literacy) and STEM also provide innovative and supportive aspects of the curriculum.

In addition to year group learning, we regularly engage in whole school initiatives to develop our children’s cultural capital. These events, experiences, visits and resources complement the curriculum, promote community and ensure our children develop aspiration and knowledge to succeed. Examples include the annual Public Speaking Challenge, live theatre, residentials; visits to the National Park, Eden Camp, Warner Brothers, Chatsworth, museums, the National Holocaust Centre and local parks; links with University STEM professionals,  secondary experts and access to authors or professionals through live skype links.

Our enriched and innovative curriculum is subject planned using the National Curriculum with curricular links whenever meaningful. Whilst effectively preparing children for the next phase with sound mathematical and literacy abilities, it is balanced and broadly based promoting the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of children and preparing them for the opportunities and responsibilities of later life. Sport, technology, health & relationships, the arts, humanities, religious education, languages and contributing to the wider community are all championed by passionate subject leaders – often experts in their field – and supported by investment in all curriculum areas.

Preparing Children for life in Modern Britain – British Values

At Brockwell Junior School we take very seriously our responsibility to prepare children for life in modern Britain. We ensure that the fundamental British Values are introduced, discussed and lived out through the ethos and work of the school. All curriculum areas provide a vehicle for furthering understanding of these concepts and, in particular, our RE, Health & Relationships lessons provide excellent opportunities to deepen and develop understanding. Children embrace these concepts with enthusiasm and demonstrate a good understanding of their application to their own lives.

Children develop character through experiences: – sporting events, a range of visits and use of outdoor education centres. Their strong rooted values-based understanding gives them an excellent platform for embracing diversity.

Our whole curriculum also promotes understanding and engagement with the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs. Pupils develop and demonstrate skills and attitudes that will allow them to participate fully in and contribute positively to life in modern Britain. Practical examples include school elections, Weekly ‘Picture News’, ‘Music of the Week’, theatre visits from Live Theatre, Inspiring People study within class names, acts of remembrance, and our values based assemblies. 


Personal and Social Education and Well-being – Health & Relationships

PSHE (Personal, Social, Health Education) enables children to acquire the knowledge, understanding, skills, values and attitudes they need to manage their lives. PSHE develops the qualities and attributes pupils need to thrive as individuals, family members and members of the local and global society in which they live. At Brockwell Junior School, we believe the role of PSHE is significant to individual pupil motivation and achievement; it teaches children to make independent, healthy, confident and respectful choices in order to develop into an active citizen with a strong, positive disposition and self-worth.

Learning for all includes regular topics that link to the 5 ways to Wellbeing and positive mental health. This includes reflections to regulate emotions, mindfulness (& yoga) and support for initiatives such as #timetotalk day. Our pupils can apply to be our ‘Wonders’ – our Wellbeing Wonders and Ambassadors and Ambassadresses for wellbeing. 

Nurture, learning support and therapeutic provision helps some children build protective and positive relationships and develop positive self-esteem thereby enabling them to learn and play – to be resilient.

PSHE draws together many strands that contribute to the coverage of SMC. These include Citizenship, Health, Sex & Relationships and other examples such as the Get Set values of the Olympics that we continue to study. Our curriculum includes planned learning experiences within our Personal & Social Education (PSHE) and Relationships Education. It also includes the day to day guidance, advice and language modelled by staff in the school. For example, we talk about respect and giving consent for things as routine. Assemblies and drama are often used to raise awareness of key issues and give children the opportunity to develop skills they may need in real life. Children learn how to ask for help if they are worried and how to become assertive and able to resist pressure.

The NSPCC deliver the Speak Out Stay Safe programme and each cohort take part.  The Sports Partnership deliver 560, a programme to promote healthy choices and road safety sessions which include ‘Bikeability’ from Year 3. Online Safety teaching and messages are routinely part of the week. We promote friendship and anti-bullying strategies through an annual campaign, alongside the Anti-Bullying Alliance.

Children develop responsibility and self-belief through the numerous opportunities to participate. Mini Leaders, Travel Ambassadors, This Girl Can Leaders, Club Leaders, Reporting Crew, Bronze Ambassadors, STEM Ambassadors, Anti-Stigma Champions, School Councilors, Green Team and Friendship Leaders are examples of roles we routinely have in school.


English is at the heart of the curriculum at Brockwell Junior School.  We recognise that a high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that not only are they are able to communicate effectively with others, but through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. The ability and the enjoyment of reading allows pupils to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Reading also enables pupils to both acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know. All the skills of language are essential to participating fully as a member of society; our aim is to ensure that every child leaves Brockwell as a confident orator, reader and writer, fully equipped for the demands of the secondary curriculum and for life beyond that.


There are two dimensions involved in the skill of reading: word reading and comprehension (both listening and reading).

Skilled reading involves both the speedy working out of the pronunciation of unfamiliar printed words (decoding) and the speedy recognition of familiar printed words. Work at Brockwell Infant school underpins much of the early development of learning to read and we aim to build on this by further developing these skills and providing opportunities for those children who need extra support to catch up and keep up including phonic programmes such as Read, Write Inc. and Fresh Start.

Comprehension skills are developed through high quality discussions and reading a wide range of stories, poems and non-fiction. By providing stimulating, relevant and high quality resources, we aim to broaden pupils’ knowledge of the world and themselves and extend their vocabulary.

Our aim is to foster a love of reading. Our reading scheme is colour banded and dovetails with the scheme at the infant school. It is regularly audited to ensure that books are relevant, smart and sufficiently varied. Our scheme consists of books from both published reading schemes and other high quality literature. Every two years a reading consultant visits and advises with purchasing. Pupils select from the structured scheme throughout their time with us but are invited to read other books either from home our library as they become more confident.

Our school library is a vibrant space and run by members of the school staff, two experienced volunteers and a group of librarians/reading ambassadors. We have a large selection of fiction which is categorised by genre. The non-fiction section is catalogued using the Dewey system, and all children attend sessions on accessing non-fiction which is run by one of our volunteer librarians. New books are purchased regularly. The space is open every day to change reading books, sit and become absorbed in a book, or to research and work sensibly. It is open on a Thursday and Friday to exchange library books.

Reading is a subject that is explicitly taught every day. The school has a variety of resources, including an online resource with eBooks called Wordsmith. Providing high quality literature is a top priority, and the books that we read, feed into many other areas of the curriculum. We aim to host author visits at least once a year. Books are woven into our daily English lessons, and class novels are read in directed whole class reading sessions. Comprehension strategies are taught as the whole class reads together and are based around the acronym VIPERS – vocabulary, inference, predict, explain, retrieve and sequence or summarise. Pupils record their thoughts in reading journals and collect examples of new vocabulary.  All pupils have the opportunity to read independently at school and are encouraged to practise at home, recording entries in their personal reading diary. These diaries are monitored and celebrated weekly.  Individual and guided reading take place to provide extra support.

The Spoken Language

At Brockwell, we understand that oracy underpins the development of writing and therefore in all subjects across the curriculum, pupils are encouraged to listen, think, discuss, and voice opinions. Regular opportunities are given for paired and group discussion. Role play and drama opportunities are woven through the English curriculum and pupils have the opportunity to record their work using, for example, Seesaw and Green Screening. Theatre companies perform at least once annually. Our annual public speaking competition, judged by an external panel, offers every child the opportunity to prepare and deliver a speech on a subject of their choice. Alternatively, pupils can perform a poem as their entry to the competition. Year 6 also have the opportunity to take part in a local verse speaking competition for primary schools.


As in reading, there are two main threads involved in the teaching and learning of writing: these are composition (communicating and structuring our ideas in writing) and transcription (spelling and handwriting).

At Brockwell we understand that writing is a complex process, one that involves weaving many threads together. We promote writing for pleasure as a philosophy, and we aim to provide an exciting stimulus for each writing project. Class reading feeds directly into our writing and writing projects are often linked to other curriculum areas. We integrate the teaching of grammar and punctuation into our reading and writing sessions. We have adopted the Herts for Learning acronym ADD LOV(V)E as a spine for teaching and developing the writing process.



Audience and purpose

Derived from reading and

Developed through spoken language

Levels of formality



Variation of sentence structures to suit purpose

Editing for accuracy and enhancement


Pupils are encouraged to be fully involved in the process of completing a piece of work, understanding that writing must be planned, edited and revised to make it the best that it can be. They are also involved in planning which elements will make each piece of writing successful and how they can improve as individual writers.


Handwriting and presentation are important to us all, and particular focus is placed on developing a fluent, joined style in lower school. Pupils write in pencil or pen, depending on age, stage and task.


Spelling Shed is our online spelling programme, tailored to each year group. This involves a weekly spelling lesson, time to practise at school and at home and a test to measure progress. Non-negotiable spellings in our writing include a list of agreed core words and those that have been previously learned.


At Brockwell we believe in championing English, and reading and writing are regularly celebrated in our Friday assembly. Newly published books are discussed and examples of pupils’ work are shared. 

The programmes of study for writing at key stages 1 and 2 are constructed similarly to those for reading:

  • transcription (spelling and handwriting)
  • composition (articulating ideas and structuring them in speech and writing)

It is essential that teaching develops pupils’ competence in these 2 dimensions. In addition, pupils should be taught how to plan, revise and evaluate their writing. These aspects of writing have been incorporated into the programmes of study for composition.

Writing down ideas fluently depends on effective transcription: that is, on spelling quickly and accurately through knowing the relationship between sounds and letters (phonics) and understanding the morphology (word structure) and orthography (spelling structure) of words. Effective composition involves articulating and communicating ideas, and then organising them coherently for a reader. This requires clarity, awareness of the audience, purpose and context, and an increasingly wide knowledge of vocabulary and grammar. Writing also depends on fluent, legible and, eventually, speedy handwriting.

Spelling, vocabulary, grammar, punctuation

Opportunities for teachers to enhance pupils’ vocabulary arise naturally from their reading and writing. As vocabulary increases, teachers show pupils how to understand the relationships between words, how to understand nuances in meaning, and how to develop their understanding of, and ability to use, figurative language. They also teach pupils how to work out and clarify the meanings of unknown words and words with more than 1 meaning.

Pupils are taught to control their speaking and writing consciously and to use Standard English. They are taught to use the elements of spelling, grammar, punctuation and ‘language about language’ listed. Throughout the programmes of study, teachers teach pupils the vocabulary they need to discuss their reading, writing and spoken language. It is important that pupils learn the correct grammatical terms in English and that these terms are integrated within teaching.



Our mathematics curriculum equips pupils with tools that include logical reasoning, problem-solving skills, and the ability to think in abstract ways.

By adopting some of the principles of a mastery approach, we aim to provide children with all the necessary skills and knowledge to become numerate and confident to tackle mathematical problems independently.  We believe all children can achieve in maths. We block areas and teach them so much practice is given and learning secured. Whenever possible same day intervention is offered to help some keep up. We use a range of engaging online and other resources to ensure mathematics is exciting. White Rose materials guide teacher planning along with a range of concrete apparatus and other schemes enabling teachers to plan to an objective in the most effective way.

We use a range of teaching methods to rehearse mental calculations and a variety of formal and informal written strategies. Fluency, reasoning and problem solving, alongside opportunity to practise, are routine aspects of maths learning. Children are generally taught in mixed ability groups for their daily maths lesson. They move from counting reliably to calculating fluently with all four number operations. Children will use a wider range of mathematical language, diagrams and statistical charts.  They extend and secure their use of mathematical language, using it to talk about their methods, explain their reasoning when solving problems and applying it during investigations. Progress is monitored in termly target setting and Pupil Progress Meetings (PPM).

Guided by the National Centre of Excellence, children benefit from self-assessment and immediate feedback with planned interventions. Each year, children are assessed against age related expectations in order to accurately report to parents. We have a range of resources in school including published schemes and online subscriptions. Homework linked to online resources may be set by teachers.

Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)

With ‘Learning Challenge Questions’ like –  Why is Usain Bolt so fast? Which came first: the fruit or the blossom? – Science at Brockwell develops natural curiosity.

We believe that children learn best when they are actively and imaginatively involved and this is reflected in our approach to the teaching of science. The programmes of study include experimental and investigative work alongside knowledge acquisition. Children talk about and record their findings in appropriate ways. Each year, the children cover all the relevant attainment targets with opportunity to revisit them in the context of themes and cross-curricular links. Learning Challenge Curriculum, Science Directions, Rising Stars and topic specific resources form our key resources.

Science enrichment takes place in school and in other locations. All year groups take part in K’Nex challenges of increasing complexity for each year group.

The curriculum is further enhanced by each class experiencing a discrete activity as suggested in the annual British Science Week, which has ideas for all key stages.

A much larger Brockwell Science Week is planned and delivered in four-year cycle. In the past, this has involved planetarium, falconry, and ‘kitchen sink’ science demonstrations.

We also use the opportunities afforded to us by our local community, for example investigating the science behind building towers at ‘The Crooked Spire’ and Chesterfield Museum.

A wide range of skills such as teamwork, resilience and accuracy are developed in science.  Softer skills such patience and determination are also fostered.


Technology is innovative and inspiring. With teachers hosting Teachmeet and learning from STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) specialists, children’s skills develop quickly.

With Blogging, Green Screening, wide use of Junior Scratch and our STEM Club, children have great opportunities to develop IT skills and apply those at Brockwell Junior School. We have ‘Switched On’ as a skeleton resource to support Teaching & Learning.

The school has a modern computing suite with 20 computers and an interactive whiteboard. Each classroom is also equipped with a computer and interactive whiteboard which is used by the children to support their work in computing. Children may also access Ipads and other devices. The work covered is of a cross-curricular nature and includes word processing, graphics and design, data handling/interrogation, control and simulations.

In addition, children learn specific computing skills. Staff and children are currently focusing on developing skills in electronic communication techniques and the ability to use the internet to access relevant information to enhance their learning. We encourage the responsible use of the internet and computing. The school subscribes to the EMBC network and all access to the internet is filtered to a high security level.

Online Safety is planned for in all year groups and includes lesson work, assemblies and communication with families. ‘Digital Parenting’ resources and online safety messages are shared with parents and children regularly. 

Children also design, plan and make a variety of moving toys, vehicles and books. Children study a range of themes including Control, Mechanisms, Robotics, Textiles and Food. As the children learn, they are given more opportunities to identify their own tasks for activity. Design and Technology work involves investigating existing artefacts; the designing and planning process; making and evaluation. There are opportunities to work with a wide range of media. Whole days such as the KNEX Challenge Day, Build It! and Enterprise enhance the teaching and learning of this subject.

Food technology develops into ‘Restaurant’. Year Six children develop a menu from concept to authentic hospitality which develops aspiration alongside developing practical and economic skills required.

Humanities – History & Geography

Our vision is to inspire pupils’ curiosity and fascination about the world and its people, and the relationship between them, and to inspire pupils’ curiosity about the past. We aim to provide a rich and relevant curriculum, linked to topics that have meaning to them or are current, with which they can engage and develop a love of learning which will remain with them for life. We aim for all our pupils to gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world, as well as that of the Earth’s physical and human processes. Our vision is for our pupils to recognise how this knowledge and understanding can influence the future and how we can use this to help and protect our world and its people. In a nutshell, our mantra is ‘learn, love, look after’ ~ we will only love something if we learn about it, and if we love it, we will look after it. Lessons are planned to ensure that all pupils have opportunities to succeed, and



there are no barriers to every child achieving and being challenged.
Topics are informed by the national curriculum and are sensitive to children’s interests, as well as the context of the local area. Humanities at BJS is carefully planned and structured to ensure that current learning is linked to previous learning and that the school’s approaches are informed by current pedagogy.


Humanities are also taught with a Learning Challenge concept that is built around the principle of greater learner involvement in their work. It requires deep thinking and encourages learners to work using a question as the starting point. Time for learners to reflect or review their learning is central to the whole process. This is in keeping with the ‘Learning to Learn’ principles, where reflection is seen as a very important part of an individual’s learning programme.


What makes the Earth angry? Why do so many people go to the Mediterranean for their holidays?  What’s so special about the USA?  These are a few of the many learning challenges the children become involved with.

Displays around school include those that show what’s in the news, world affairs and local news issues. Assemblies are regularly used to learn about local, national and international geography – our teacher’s climb to the top of Kilimanjaro as one example.

Our approach ensures skills are developed, fieldwork opportunities deepen understanding and knowledge is adapted to changing circumstances.  Learning is celebrated through opportunities such as ‘Mediterranean Day’ in Year 3 when food tasting, dance and traditional dress transform their school day.

Our aims include the teaching of observation, recording, questioning and researching. Much of the work starts from what the children know and moves out from that point. Hence there is emphasis on the children’s environment in Holmebrook Valley Park, Loundsley Green, Ashgate and Eyam. Other work is on a regional, national and international scale.

Through our support of SOS Basse in The Gambia, children have annual assemblies focusing on life in another country and learning about life there. This is being developed so each class supports a charity connected with the inspirational person after whom their class is named. 


Were the Anglo-Saxons really smashing?  How can we re-discover the wonders of Ancient Egypt?  Why were the Norman castles certainly not bouncy?  Some of our best pieces of writing and most memorable days are linked to History topics.

Our work in History is based on the National Curriculum and enhanced with trips, rich texts and cross curricular links wherever possible. Children study a variety of periods from British and World History. Themes covered in History include a sense of chronology, how peoples’ lives have changed, understanding different sources of information and recognising that the world today reflects events from the past.

Trips are carefully planned and include re-enactment days such as the Roman / Viking visits.

Religious Education

RE follows the Derbyshire Agreed Syllabus.  Through learning about the beliefs and practice of the world religions, children develop understanding of others and learn to ask questions that develop their spiritual and moral understanding. The syllabus is non-denominational and multi faith in character. Collective worship is daily through our whole school assembly that is broadly but not exclusively Christian in nature. Friday assemblies are a celebration of excellent attitudes to learning and social or academic achievement.

“RE explores big questions about life, in order to find out what people believe and what difference this makes to how they live, so that pupils can make sense of religion and worldviews, reflecting on their own ideas and ways of living.”

RE Curriculum Questions and Progression

Throughout KS2, pupils learn about Christians, Hindus, Jewish people and Muslims as well as Humanists. They make connections between differing aspects of religion and consider the different forms of religious expression. They develop a knowledge and understanding of this range of religions and worldviews.

They consider the beliefs, teachings, practices and ways of life central to religion. They learn about sacred texts and other sources and consider their meanings. They begin to recognise diversity in religion, learning about similarities and differences both within and between religions and beliefs and the importance of dialogue between them. They extend the range and use of specialist vocabulary. They recognise the challenges involved in distinguishing between ideas of right and wrong, and valuing what is good and true. They communicate their ideas, recognising other people’s viewpoints. They consider their own beliefs and values and those of others in the light of their learning in RE.




Class compositions each term are memorable and include contemporary choices and inspirational arrangements performed to the school community. Music of the Week is proudly used to promote music appreciation and general knowledge. Ten Pieces, Young Voices and Sing Up also enhance the music curriculum.

In music lessons children compose and play their own music. They also sing songs and listen to a variety of styles of music from a range of different cultures. If children would like individual lessons, we make these arrangements.

Our autumn / winter choir is well established and popular. Many children access individual lessons in violin, brass, piano and a group club for guitar. Children sing and perform exceptionally well – concerts, choir and Young Voices being a few examples.


Art education stimulates creativity and imagination, whilst giving the child unique opportunities to develop intellectually, emotionally, physically and socially.  In this phase the children will learn to improve their mastery of art and design techniques by learning specific drawing, painting and sculpture techniques. They will experience using a wider range of materials. Children also use technology to produce images, patterns and decorative pieces of work. They will record their observations and ideas and use them to review and evaluate improvements.  They will also learn about great artists, architects and designers in history.  Children are guided to explore their responses to pieces of art. 

With content enhancing other curriculum areas, children explore different techniques using a wide variety of materials. In the course of their activities, children are encouraged to become aware of “basic elements” such as “line”, “design”, “mood” and “style”. Emphasis is placed on developing originality, individual powers of observation and description, and a positive self-analysis of their work. This process is cyclical and is developed throughout the four years. We access experts in local secondary schools such as when making Greek clay pots in the art studios. 

Over the phase, children learn about a range of artists, designers and architects such as Warhol, Banksy, William Morris, Rousseau, Lowry and Capability Brown. 

To further encourage appreciation and personal responses to art and culture, we plan experiences and whole school events over the four years. Recent examples include sculpture workshops with local artist Jason Heppenstall, a study of children’s book  illustrators and visits to Chatsworth and the Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

Community initiatives such as Monkey Park plans, local pharmacy competitions and Chesterfield in Bloom are well supported.

Primary Languages

We want children to be curious about other cultures and understand some people have different languages. Through French we want them to enjoy and succeed in communicating using another language, both spoken and written.
LCP is our initial resource complimented by a range of resources including Early Start and ‘Singing French’. 

We use electronic slides, flash cards and worksheets with a range of fun activities sequenced throughout each unit.

We have a range of resources including audio and DVD clips to support authentic experiences. The first unit is ‘All About Me’ which the children begin in Year 3. The units that follow are relevant and develop a wider understanding of culture.

Physical Education

Rockwell’s achievements in sport are recognised locally in the Active Chesterfield Awards and Derbyshire Awards (Winners 2019, 2018, 2017). We have also been recognised nationally through the Youth Sport Trust as Outstanding Primary School 2017. This is due to the high percentage of children engaging in tournaments, festivals and clubs and the quality and range of physical activity in lesson time. With new sports for all including Boccia, Cheerleading, Fencing, Yoga, Dance, New Age Kurling and Quidditch, all children can get involved and develop active, healthy habits. We aim to give EVERY child the physical literacy, emotional and thinking skills to achieve in P.E., Sport and Life.

Through our Real PE, a child-centered approach, we seek to encourage children to manage and control their bodies with increasing skill and confidence. Children will be encouraged to use their social and personal skills to solve problems. They will be able to cooperate with, interrelate with and challenge each other to increasingly difficult tasks and satisfy their need for adventure, fun and success. They will refine their skills to become more responsible for their actions, become more independent and to be resourceful. School provides carefully planned activities in gymnastics, games, dance, athletics, outdoor and adventurous activities and swimming for all children.

We have strong links with the School Sports Partnership and local clubs such as the CLTA, Chesterfield Hockey, Athletics and Golf.

Active Playtimes include daily options of track, trim trail, dodgeball, basketball, football, multi-sports and skipping.

Challenging the More Able

In addition to well differentiated work, we encourage children identified as more able, gifted or talented to run clubs of their own. We also have Computing solutions to support the more able such as Maths Whizz Year 7, Abacus, and Primary Resources Community Access. We will consider granting a bursary for a student with a particular aptitude in order to support them.

Meeting the Needs of All

Proudly inclusive, we believe that every child matters and that all children have individual needs. Through a suite of pastoral support options, adapted curriculum if required, investment in quality resources and carefully sequenced lessons, children make progress.

Making Marking Matter & Assessment

Both assessment FOR learning and assessment OF learning feature routinely throughout teaching and learning at Brockwell. Our feedback, whether verbal or written, impacts positively on learning. Please ask for our assessment policy for more detail.


  • Contact us

    Queries to Paula Knowles or Julie Murcott at
    Brockwell Junior School
    Purbeck Avenue
    Chesterfield,S40 4NP

    Tel: 01246 278542
    Fax: 01246 278542


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