At Denby Dale First and Nursery School we offer our children a rich, creative and relevant curriculum. The learning activities, experiences and interactions promote our school aims, meet the requirements of the national curriculum and also help to develop children’s individual skills and strengths. We aim to deliver a broad and balanced curriculum which engages children and develops a love of learning that they will take forward with them.

We use a creative topic based approach with our children as a way of teaching areas of the curriculum and developing basic skills. Children are encouraged to be creative and express themselves through the curriculum.

We place a high emphasis on Growth Mindset, encouraging children to become resilient, independent learners who rise to challenges with confidence. Children work to their own personal targets, recognise that mistakes are part of learning and edit and improve their own work.

In addition to National Curriculum subjects we teach Religious Education using the Local Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education in Kirklees and Calderdale 2014 – 2019.

We also have regular sessions where children learn about personal, social and health and online safety issues that may affect them and others.

In the Foundation Stage and KS1 we follow a systematic synthetic phonic based programme Letters and Sounds supported by some Jolly Phonics and our own resources. Phonics is taught daily in reception and Y1. Children are taught key phonic skills and terminology such as grapheme (letter) and phoneme (sound) correspondence and oral blending and segmenting of sounds. These skills are then developed further so that the children are able to blend sounds to read and segment sounds to spell. Alongside developing the children’s phonics skills, they also learn to read and spell key words and ‘tricky’ words. As the children progress there is a greater focus on spelling rules and patterns with spelling lists sent home to learn and spellings practised through dictation and spelling tests.

Throughout the school we encourage our children to enjoy reading and listening to a wide range of texts and to develop a love of reading. English lessons, guided reading, paired reading and regular story times ensure children are introduced to a wide range of authors and genres. The children take home books to read from a wide selection of ‘real’ books as well as some from schemes such as Oxford Reading Tree. The children are encouraged to read regularly at home and a Reward Scheme encourages them to produce book reviews, PowerPoint presentations and research authors.

In maths we have adopted the maths mastery approach. This is a style of maths teaching inspired by Singapore and Shanghai. It enhances mathematical understanding, enjoyment and achievement for every child. Objects and pictures are used to demonstrate and visualise abstract ideas alongside numbers and symbols. Mathematical concepts are explored in a variety of representations and problem solving contexts to give pupils a richer and deeper learning experience. We use the White Rose Hub schemes of work in Year 1 to 4. In Year 5 we work closely with the middle schools and other first schools to ensure that when pupils move to Y6 they have all experienced the same maths mastery approach.

Educational visits, visitors and themed days enhance the learning at Denby Dale First and Nursery School. Children are enthused and hooked into the learning through these opportunities. Year 5 have the opportunity to go on a residential visit. This helps develop confidence, independence and self-esteem as well as giving the opportunity for fun and adventurous activities.

Throughout the year each class presents an assembly and invites parents in to celebrate and share their learning.

Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development (SMSC)

Our school ethos and curriculum positively promotes Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development. It is at the heart of the school.

The Spiritual Development of children is shown by their

  • ability to be reflective about their own beliefs, religious or otherwise, that inform their perspective on life and their interest in and respect for different people’s faiths, feelings and values
  • sense of enjoyment and curiosity in learning about themselves, others and the world around them
  • use of imagination and creativity in their learning
  • willingness to reflect on their experiences

The moral development of children is shown by their

  • ability to recognise the difference between right and wrong, readily apply this understanding in their own lives and, in so doing, respect the civil and criminal law of England
  • understanding of the consequences of their behaviour and actions
  • interest in investigating and offering reasoned views about moral and ethical issues, and being able to appreciate and understand the viewpoints of others on these issues

The social development of children is shown by their

  • use of a range of social skills in in different contexts, including working and socialising with pupils and adults from different religious, ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds
  • willingness to participate in a variety of communities and social settings, including by volunteering, co-operating well with others and being able to resolve conflicts effectively
  • acceptance 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; the children develop and demonstrate skills and attitudes that will allow them to participate fully in and contribute positively to life in modern Britain

The cultural development of children is shown by their

  • understanding and appreciation of the wide range of cultural influences that have shaped their own heritage and that of others
  • understanding and appreciation of the range of different cultures within school and further afield as an essential element of their preparation for life in modern Britain
  • Knowledge of Britain’s democratic parliamentary system and its central role in shaping our history and values, and in continuing to develop Britain
  • Willingness to participate in and respond positively to artistic, sporting and cultural opportunities
  • Interest in exploring, improving understanding of and showing respect for different faiths and cultural diversity, and the extent to which they understand, accept, respect and celebrate diversity, as shown by their tolerance and attitudes towards different religious, ethnic and socio-economic groups in the local, national and global communities

Promoting British Values

At Denby Dale First and Nursery School we believe in promoting and holding true to what we recognise to be British Values.

Much of this takes place through our curriculum teaching during PSHE lessons, Circle time and RE lessons. Issues are also raised during a whole range of subject areas and in school assemblies.

The values we seek to promote are

  • Democracy (eg. School council)
  • Importance of rules (eg PSHE lessons, class council, assemblies PE and sporting activities)
  • Individual liberty (eg PSHE lessons, assemblies, circle time)
  • Mutual respect (eg PSHE lessons, circle time assemblies)
  • Tolerance of those wioth different faiths and beliefs (eg RE lessons, assemblies and PSHE lessons)


Extra-Curricular Clubs

We offer a wide variety of school clubs. The clubs we run vary from term to term and are offered from reception to Y5. Clubs may be run by staff from our school with a small cost to cover resources or by external providers who may charge for their activities. Places at clubs are offered as fairly as possible and we endeavour to ensure that children have the opportunity to attend clubs.