My curriculum journey so far…


June 2013 – My role in school begins to shift from SENCO to ‘curriculum manager’. As changes to the proposed curriculum seem to come in on a weekly basis, I begin to wonder if this role is going to drive me insane! Then I discover Michael’s work on his blog here. Suddenly it all started to fall into place, just like the jigsaw he devised. I shared this with the staff and we decided to use the jigsaw theme for our school. It is visual, bright, easy to read, represents teamwork and collaboration; and is primary friendly. Michael has been very supportive of my work and we’ve had useful discussions about how I am progressing, thanks! Do follow his blogs they are of utmost importance to the primary teacher. Here he has plans laid out for each year group:

I had been reading various books regarding developing curriculum, and particularly enjoyed Brian Male’s book which you can find here:
He states in his introduction:
” We need a curriculum with a strong moral purpose; a curriculum that we all came into the profession to teach.” The visuals used in his work include a tree; where the roots hold the empathy, motivation, managing feelings, self-awareness and social skills, the trunk contains the learning skills which connect the roots to the leaves – the subject. He also uses Venn diagrams and design triangles. The point I am making is that the design is ours to choose and we chose jigsaws.

“The statutory requirement on schools is to ‘teach the Programmes of Study during the Key Stage.’ It is left up to the schools to decide how to teach the Programmes of Study, and how long to spend doing so.” Brian Male,2012.

The book really opened my eyes to my new role as he states that the role of the curriculum manager is:
“To impact on the designs before they are carried out to help ensure that they are appropriate to the intended learning. To review the outcome of the experiences to see what was learned and what was not and how this needs to be fed into the next stage of design.” Brian Male, 2012

So I am mid- design, playing with my puzzles, trying them out, throwing them out and expanding on them. I am happy to share where we are so far. We have medium/long term plans for foundation subjects linked with topics. We are on the cusp of all trying half termly plans using jigsaws (giving up on wheel planning, not cost effective for us). I have had a go at Literacy plans and ‘I can’ jigsaws for writing, and the RE and Maths co-ordinators are having a go at there respective subjects. Feel free to deride, ignore or steal. None of this is my own work, I’ve just pieced the puzzle together.

Happy planning!

Overview of school plans, ‘I can’ statements, English planning, blank half-termly plans. More to follow!

Curriculum design jigsaw St Martha’s
I can writing hexagons
English planning jigsaws
Half termly plans each class Master


16 thoughts on “My curriculum journey so far…

  1. misshorsfall says:

    Thanks for this! It’s good to see what other people are doing. I especially like the English planning jigsaws – I’ll have to forward them on to my Literacy co-ordinator!

  2. Karen says:

    I like what you’ve done, I presume that you have all single age classes as that’s our issue

  3. Cal Lamb says:

    Thanks for this, very useful to see what another school has done. I love the jigsaw design too

  4. djangobop says:

    Just spotted your blog after looking on Michael Tidd’s blog – thank you so much for all your fab work.

  5. Annette says:

    I love the hexagon jigsawa and am going to use them for our medium term planning. Where did you get them from in case I need to adapt

  6. Annette says:

    I love your hexagons and am going to use them for our medium term planning. Where did you get them from so I can adapt number if need be?

  7. Bernie Doherty says:

    I just love the materials. I may just magpie them. It makes me wonder how sad my life is when I get excited by coloured hexagons!! Thank you so much for posting them. I couldn’t access the assessment materials though the link though. Could you send the link to me? With gratitude.Bernie

  8. Pipinha says:

    Hi. Love what you have done and thanks for sharing it. Has given me some good ideas. May have to ‘magpie’ a few. Noticed in your history plans you have not mentioned the Iron Age or Stone Age. Was this intentional?

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