At Birkwood Primary School, we have designed a bespoke, intentionally sequenced curriculum, rich in knowledge and experiences, that enables children to make a confident and accomplished start to their lives. Using extensive research and collaboration with the wider education community, our bespoke curriculum ensures clear, well-understood end points which meet the needs, interests and ambitions of our children and their families. We set out the knowledge and understanding that children will acquire in their time at Birkwood; these are necessary precursors to critical thinking, analysis and creativity. Prior learning is recalled at several opportunities in order to broaden the knowledge of each child. Our curriculum is planned to ensure all children have the opportunity to build their vocabulary, knowledge and skills in all subjects so that they reflect thoughtfully, learn eagerly and apply these wisely. Through carefully selected teaching approaches, relevant differentiation and scaffolding are woven through the curriculum. 


Alongside the academic learning that is essential for children’s future success, our curriculum develops children’s social, emotional and creative skills. Through access to 1:1 devices, we endeavour to use technology wherever possible to enhance learning across the curriculum. Reading is also at the heart of our curriculum, and we are relentless in our aim to ensure that all children have the best chance of becoming fluent, confident and passionate readers.  A comprehensively stocked library and the opportunity for children to utilise age-appropriate, carefully chosen texts in reading sessions ensure reading is given the highest possible profile across school. Staff are trained regularly both in-house and by visiting experts. 

Our curriculum is a framework for setting out the aims of our programme of education, including: 

  • The planned knowledge and understanding to be gained at each stage (intent) 
  • Delivering our framework over time with subject specific pedagogy (implementation) 
  • Evaluating what knowledge and understanding pupils have gained against expectations (impact). 


Our aim is for every child to flourish by following ‘The Birkwood Way’. Underpinning ‘The Birkwood Way’ are the following key drivers: 

  • Doing the right thing 
  • The pursuit of knowledge 
  • Leadership, teamwork and independence. 


Our curriculum aims 

The curriculum enables children to deepen their understanding by way of answering ‘Key Questions’. These are carefully planned and thought out within each curriculum area and sequenced into bespoke units of work. These ‘Key Questions’ are informed by the work of subject associations.  As children move through school and study the curriculum, they develop a deep understanding of the key concepts in each subject area and how they are interlinked through a diverse and rich knowledge base. 

Children are taught key language patterns to think and in turn speak and write like a historian, a scientist, a theologian or an artist.  The curriculum is enriched through carefully chosen trips and workshops, which give children the experiences that bring knowledge to life. 

Achieving these aims 

We are committed to high quality professional learning that focuses on what makes effective teaching, subject knowledge development and sound formative assessment practices. Curriculum design is driven by a staff team which supplements the traditional subject leader roles. Subjects are taught discretely but links are made where there is natural alignment to ensure that children develop an interconnected web of general knowledge. The wider curriculum heavily influences the development reading comprehension. 

Explicit instruction enables children to see expert modelling and hear expert explanations. 

How we know if the curriculum is being learned 

The curriculum is the progress model – if children are keeping up with the curriculum then they are making good progress.  Progress means knowing more and remembering more. Knowledge that has been learned and retained in long term memory is necessary for analysis, creativity etc.  We ask: has the child gained the knowledge to understand the key concepts and ideas? Is this enabling them to develop the skills they need to master?  We set regular quizzes on old and current topics.  Where appropriate, an end of unit written task may be set where children demonstrate their knowledge gained by communicating in the language patterns that they have been taught.  Old units of work may be used as prompts for independent writing, giving further opportunities to assess what has been committed to long term memory and can be retrieved easily. 



Design Technology









Art and Design

PE & Sport




Early Years


Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

Year 5

Year 6


Curriculum Assessment