‘To strive for excellence in learning and all that we do’
At Great Dunmow Primary School, we believe that a robust PSHE curriculum is vital for shaping our children into happy, confident and open-minded citizens, who can make a positive contribution to their community and who are well equipped to cope with life and its complexities. It is not only in PSHE lessons where the PSHE curriculum content is taught, it is fundamental to the ethos of the school and overspills into everything we do as educators, where we aim to help the pupils to become the best that they can be.
Our aim is to give our pupils the opportunities to discuss and explore themes in and outside of their own experiences. We are dedicated to providing our children with a strong understanding of the diverse world around them in terms of relationships, race, disabilities, religion and culture, and to be open and accepting of everyone, understanding and embracing our differences.
The curriculum covers key areas which will support children to make informed choices now and in the future around their health, safety, wellbeing, relationships and financial matters. It will support them in becoming confident, healthy individuals and active members of society, who will be assertive enough to think for themselves and stand up for what they believe in. Within the curriculum, there is scope to adapt it to suit the needs of our children while also being aware of how to tackle some more sensitive issues based on what we know about our pupils.
As a school, we have adopted the ‘Kapow Primary’ scheme of work; this links directly to the PSHE Association Programme of Study, which is recommended by the DfE.
There are five areas of learning within the scheme:
These areas are revisited each year to allow children to build on prior learning. The lessons are based upon the statutory requirements for ‘Relationships and Health Education’, but where our lessons go beyond these requirements (primarily in the Citizenship and Economic Wellbeing areas), they refer to the PSHE Association’s Programme of Study.
When beginning a new unit, teachers plan in a lesson to introduce the topic and to set the ground rules for the subsequent lessons. These ground rules help to create a safe environment for the children to learn in. The lessons themselves will vary and resources such as stories, video clips and scenarios may be used to help relate the topics to real life. Role-play activities may also be planned to help to bring the theory to life.
Where possible cross-curricular links are made, in particular with Computing for online safety and Science for growing, nutrition, teeth, diet and lifestyle. There are strong links made through our cookery lessons too in terms of health and a balanced diet.
Our scheme of work covers the ‘Relationships and Health Education’ statutory guidance (as set out by the Department for Education (DfE)), including the non-statutory sex education with the aim to prepare the children for the next stages in their lives and to be understanding of the changes and emotions of their peers. Sex education has been included in line with the DfE recommendations and is covered in Year 6 of our scheme. Parents are invited to discuss the content of this area of the curriculum.
Our scheme also covers the four fundamental British Values which reflect life in modern Britain: democracy, rule of law, respect and tolerance and individual liberty. Much of this is also taught through day to day school routines and expectations. The scheme supports the requirements of the Equality Act through direct teaching, for example learning about different families, the negative effect of stereotypes and celebrating differences. A range of teaching and learning activities are used and are based on good practice in teaching RSE/PSHE education to ensure that all children can access learning and make progress.
The scheme provides consistent messages throughout the age ranges, including how and where to access help and how to stay safe.
By teaching and developing the children’s skills, knowledge and understanding within the PSHE subject content, our pupils will be prepared to confidently utilise this knowledge within their own lives. We would expect to see maturity in the way pupils deal with friendship issues, to be respectful of themselves and others and have a thorough knowledge of the risks they might encounter in their lives, knowing how to avoid these risks and how to seek help should they ever need it. Children will know the difference between right and wrong and understand how to treat people with respect.
Miss J. Marshall – PSHE Lead