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The Mapplewells Curriculum


At Mapplewells Primary and Nursery School children are taught in a happy, nurturing environment and are encouraged to achieve the highest standards.


At Mapplewells, our rigorous, well-planned curriculum provides children with a high-quality education which ensures that children are supported to be well rounded, empathetic young people who have a genuine thirst for learning. Children develop a strong sense of moral purpose, in addition to a respect for and understanding of people. It is broad and balanced, rich and varied and provides them with experiences and opportunities that are relevant to our children. We are committed to ensuring that our children are not only ready for the next stage in their education but are also prepared to take their place in a truly global society.


Our curriculum vision is that every single child who leaves our school becomes the very best that they can be. Our curriculum is designed to MOVE so that SUCCESS is in our hands.


We build our curriculum around the following four principles:


Memory (inc. knowledge)


Vocabulary (inc. reading)



We provide a rich curriculum, which caters for children of all abilities, attempting to develop each child’s potential to the full.


At Mapplewells Primary and Nursery School we deliver a knowledge-based curriculum. Our curriculum is designed around an enquiry approach, starting with an open-ended overarching question to focus the pupils’ learning. Each week the pupils will work towards gaining key knowledge and vocabulary, breaking the knowledge steps down into granular knowledge to create precise Learning Objectives, which ultimately supports answering the overarching enquiry question.


We use the 4 Cs to ensure that our curriculum has the correct coverage; that we are developing a curriculum that has knowledge acquisition in the correct order; is broken down into clear granular learning sequences that contain precise sticky knowledge; and that our curriculum is coherent throughout school.


Each enquiry begins with an 'Enquiry Question', which through children should be able to answer by the end of their unit of work. During each enquiry, there will be a 'hook' to engage and motivate the children in their learning and ignite the passion to know more. In addition, there will be an authentic outcome at the end which answers the initial enquiry question. 


Children are supported in acquiring the knowledge through the use of the classroom environment, the use of knowledge mats and direct teaching. Throughout their journey in answering their enquiry question, children will constantly re-visit the knowledge they have learnt in a range of fun and useful ways to ensure the knowledge is committed to their long-term MEMORIES. This ensures that they have the necessary knowledge available to them to progress through the curriculum. They will also have the OPPORTUNITY to access experts and experience to aid them in their journey. This approach to learning provides opportunities for children to be reflective, build on prior learning skills, knowledge and values, giving them the ability to draw conclusions and make connections between new idea


VOCABULARY forms an important part of the children's learning journey and they are exposed to wide variety throughout their range of enquiries.  Our environments are language rich and children are constantly being exposed to vocabulary through the use of quality texts, linked to and supported by their English lessons; key vocabulary on their knowledge mats and throughout the curriculum


Woven through our curriculum is RSHE and Learning for Life which ensure that children learn about the wonderfully diverse world in which we live and have an understanding of EQUALITY both in our school community and the wider world. It is also with this in mind that the curriculum is carefully designed to make it accessible to everybody.


We believe that children should have an understanding of current affairs and events happening around the world. Each class has a display where children contribute news stories of interest, locally, nationally or internationally. The classes then select a news story to look at in more detail, which forms the basis of the curriculum for the final week of each half term.


Our curriculum is designed to offer a wide range of balanced learning opportunities to help your child to grow into a responsible and independent young person. 


Hopefully, your may have been talking about Enquiries at home. As mentioned above an Enquiry is the way that we explore the wider areas of the curriculum with the children.  The Enquiry poses a question to the children and throughout the project, they participate in lessons that explore the answer!


Throughout the year, they will complete three main Enquiries with a different key subject focus each term: 


Uncover - History

Explore - Geography

Create - Art and Design


Weaved throughout the project are opportunities to explore other national curriculum subject areas that have nice links to their Enquiry Question. We aim for every project to have a Personal Social Health and Emotional focus as well to encourage the children to grow into well-rounded, happy and healthy individuals.


Below are our Enquiry Questions for 2021-22:


Curriculum Enquiries Overview 2021 -22

Our Mapplewells Curriculum is driven by all stakeholders, including our School Council.


Curriculum Leader - Mr Andrew Whittle

Pupil Leadership - The School Council

Governor Leader - Mrs Fran Marshall


For more information on our curriculum, please contact your child's class teacher or the school office.

Teaching and Learning

Through our teaching we aim to equip children with the skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to be able to make informed choices and apply their learning to new contexts. Children are empowered to reach their full potential, academically and in preparing them for the future. 


A researched based, ‘Teaching and Learning’ model has been created and implemented across the whole school. The implementation of ‘MAPS’ ensures there is a consistent approach to high quality teaching and learning throughout and all pupils achieve the best possible outcomes regardless of ability and/or other factors.


‘MAPS’ is an acronym, with each letter representing a particular aspect of session and/or specific teaching and learning strategy:


M – Main Learning

A – Ask questions and apply learning

P – Pupil voice to check understanding

S – Scaffolds for success to provide challenge for all


‘MAPS’ is not to be seen and used as a teaching cycle, but as a process. A session would typically begin with a ‘Review and Reflect’, followed by the ‘Main Learning’. From this point, staff have the flexibility to navigate the model, as they deem appropriate. Below, is a detailed overview of each of the ‘MAPS’ components, explaining the expectations and rationale for each.


The rationale behind ‘MAPS’ is to ensure the following is in place:

  • Develop a Mastery Approach to teaching across the school driven by research (Rosenshine, B Principles of Instruction 2012)
  • Clear vision of how we learn at Mapplewells
  • Consistency in how we teach across the whole school
  • High quality teaching to ensure all pupils achieve the best possible outcomes
  • Planning sequences of work which builds on children’s learning (storing information in the long term memory and reducing cognitive load)
  • Process of teaching allows sufficient time for children to deepen their learning
  • Children make connections between prior and current learning, meaning children can recall more information that is stored in the long term memory
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