In Key Stage 2 the Yellow Pathway builds on the foundation years and works towards the greater diversity offered at Key Stages 3 and 4. The emphasis of the Yellow pathway is on developing key skills and knowledge whilst fostering a real love for learning, focusing on the core subjects of English, Maths, Computing, PSHE and Science. The aim of giving these areas a more prominent role is to enable the children to develop skills that will allow them to access a more diverse curriculum when moving into Key Stage 3. A range of topics are studied within each of these curriculum areas which rotate over a two year long term plan. Examples of these include ‘Stories from other cultures’ in English and ‘Time’ and ‘Money’ in Maths. We recognise the need to utilise practical, multi- sensory activities and resources with our students, in particular those with additional sensory needs. Phonics is taught using the ‘Letters and Sounds’ programme and the teaching of reading skills are approached in a developmentally incremental way.
Alongside this emphasis on core skills is the recognition that children will thrive when given an opportunity to explore all areas of their creativity and abilities. We therefore include a wide variety of foundation subjects and ‘special’ curriculum areas that provide stimulation and help to meet the individual needs, including the physical needs, of the children. Opportunities available where appropriate include input from specialist sports coaches, music teachers and therapists and specialist TAs who lead on communication and structured teaching approaches. Where appropriate students have access to specialist literacy interventions which focus on promoting further progress in early phonic and reading skills. Progress is monitored through class room observation, students work and contributions in lessons. This evidence is recorded through the use of ‘Learning Journey’ books which collate this evidence and progress is then tracked using our assessment tool, Evidence for Learning.
In Key Stage 3 we build on prior attainment by ensuring a smooth transition through a progression in teaching and learning. We aim to deliver the Key Stage 3 National Curriculum but we will adapt this curriculum to the needs of every pupil ensuring that they can continue to develop skills previously taught, learn new and exciting skills and fulfil their potential.
The Key Stage 3 National Curriculum document provides the basis of topics taught. As the programmes of study for Key Stage 2 are not fully covered at Highfield in that Key Stage, we have incorporated some Key Stage 2 topics, especially in humanities, into our Key Stage 3 curriculum. The framework is a guide of what is to be taught during the three years that pupils spend in this Key Stage. We ensure a breadth and balance across each term, each year and the whole Key Stage.
In each of the Key Stage 3 classes Numeracy and Literacy skills are taught as outlined in the primary framework but all schemes of work address skills in Key Stage 1, 2 and P scales. Pupils are streamed according to ability for these subjects also and these core skills are reinforced throughout all areas of the curriculum whenever the opportunity arises.
The Upper School department includes both Key Stage 4 and our small Sixth Form. Students from 14 to 19 follow a curriculum that is designed to build on the learning they have done throughout the school and prepare them for life beyond Highfield.
There is a balance between continuing to develop key skills and introducing a greater emphasis on work related learning and life skills. There are opportunities to follow foundation GCSE courses at Ely College for some students where this is the most appropriate course of action.
All students follow courses accredited by examining bodies - at present these are OCR Life and Living Skills and AQA Unit Award Scheme. These courses are based on work completed in school and involve a wide variety of relevant opportunities.
If you would like any further information about the Yellow pathway, please contact any Key Stage Leader or the Head of School on 01353 662085.