The David Ross Education Trust

David Ross Education Trust schools create a rich and exciting learning environment that inspires students to become their confident, academic best.

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The Arbours Primary Academy

We have over 390 children and we are continually improving and developing what we offer our pupils in our drive to become one of the best primaries in the area.


Our  Curriculum has a focus on rigorous and structured teaching of the National Curriculum key skills, which take place throughout school.

In relation to the changes and expectations in the new national curriculum, the team at The Arbours Primary Academy has developed a bespoke curriculum. This engaging curriculum facilitates teachers in delivering high quality lessons and to assess how far children have understood age-related subject content across all subjects.

The curriculum is underpinned by the Bloom’s Taxonomy theory which uses questioning to develop, secure and deepen understanding of age-related subject content.

By adopting this whole-school approach to teaching and learning across our school, we aim:

  • To enable children to deepen their understanding of age-related subject content
  • To give children the knowledge and skills they require to become effective lifelong learners in modern Britain and the wider world
  • To provide an inclusive education where every child is capable of anything
  • To support teachers in delivering high quality lessons which allow all children to succeed
  • To deliver an engaging and thought provoking curriculum which promotes children’s wellbeing and involvement in all subject areas
  • To learn from each other, through the adoption of a collaborative approach to teaching and learning

For further information about the curriculum followed at The Arbours Primary Academy please contact us.

Curriculum Overview knowledge-based curriculum

At The Arbours Primary Academy we offer a curriculum which is broad and balanced and which builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills of all children, whatever their starting points, as they progress through each Key Stage. The curriculum incorporates the statutory requirements of the new National Curriculum and other experiences and opportunities which best meet the learning and developmental needs of the pupils in our school. 

The aim of our knowledge-based curriculum is for pupils to have the requisite knowledge, skills and wider understanding to be successful, independent and motivated learners in readiness for their next stage of education. Within this curriculum the pupils will develop their learning of key facts, important events and will develop their understanding of the world around us. 

Starting with their immediate locality in Geography the curriculum will grow throughout each year ensuring that all children will leave Year Six to begin their next adventures with an understanding of the world in a way that contextualizes events, people and places in relation to their understanding of our locality and the wider world. Each year will also develop their understanding of Great Britain, Europe and the rest of the world through historical events from the Ice Age, Ancient Egyptians, the Crusades and throughout British History until the start of the 1900s.

The knowledge-based curriculum also includes a progressive science element. This is structured to allow clear scientific skills to be developed through scientific enquiry and experimentation, and to encourage pupils to develop lively, enquiring minds.

Alongside these key foci each year group will engage in General Knowledge lessons. These are creative and key knowledge-based lessons where the children will be focusing on developing their understanding of the arts, music and key scientists. Half of this curriculum time is dedicated to the development of a high-quality computing education which will equip the pupils to use computational thinking. All Key stage 2 children will be taught French 

Long Term Map

Every half term, our curriculum incorporates a WOW event, which could include a trip away from school (past trips have included Duxford Museum and The London Eye), a specialist visitor (Atomic Tom and History off the Page are previous examples) or an experience such as our whole school Science Days, History Days and Geography Days. These carefully planned events overarch the subject content to be delivered for that half term and promote engagement and excitement.

Core Subject Attainment Milestones

These attainment Milestones cover the national curriculum objectives for pupils as they progress through each year group. In Reading, Writing and Mathematics there are 3 'STEPS' per year. The aim is that pupils at least 'achieve' the age-related expectations each academic year.

Foundation Stage

At The Arbours Primary Academy, the Foundation Stage is a busy, happy, creative place which also includes areas where the children can be calm and reflective.

We offer continuous provision across all areas of the EYFS curriculum, with each of the seven developmental areas accessible to every child. The seven areas of learning are; Personal Social and Emotional Development, Communication and Language, Physical Development, Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Art and Design.

Each day the children have teacher led lessons such as Phonics and Maths, but they are also encouraged to independently complete challenging activities across the curriculum that match their individual requirements and help them achieve their next steps. Our environment promotes independence as the children can take the lead in their own learning and development.


We believe that knowledge, understanding and the successful application of the English language is a fundamental life skill; it develops children’s ability to communicate their experiences, desires and knowledge effectively and successfully. Throughout our school, we aim to nurture and develop independent readers and writers through purposeful, engaging and developmental lessons which link to our rich and stimulating creative curriculum work.

During our Talk for Writing lessons, we support our children to express themselves creatively and imaginatively, as they become enthusiastic and critical readers of stories, poetry and drama; as well as non-fiction and media texts.

Our children also gain an understanding of how language works by looking at its patterns, structures and origins and use their knowledge, skills and understanding across a range of different situations.

Here at The Arbours Primary Academy we are committed to ensuring that all children develop the ability to communicate fluently and effectively. We do this by delivering a designated English lesson a day in addition to Read Write Inc lessons. Read Write Inc is designed to support early readers with phonic development and initial reading skills such as blending and comprehension.

The daily talk for writing lessons are linked to the current national curriculum objectives. The units of work begin with a cold write which is an independent piece of writing to assess previous understanding and knowledge. The children then repeat this task at the end of the unit as a hot write. This showcases the progress and learning that have taken place across the unit.

The Arbours follow the Read Write Inc spelling programme to ensure that our children become competent and confident spellers building on prior knowledge of spelling rules. We also encourage and teach cursive handwriting throughout the school from early years to year 6.


The teaching of maths is planned carefully to meet the needs of every child at The Arbours Primary Academy . Effective Maths is used to support children to progress quickly and develop a mastery understanding of mathematical process.

Planning is based on the new national curriculum standards and used to facilitate high quality teaching and learning. Every child at Arbours Primary Academy has daily timetables practice and regular maths homework.

Furthermore, where possible, we believe that maths should be taught in context. We particularly value the importance of children understanding the reason why their mathematical learning will be relevant to them in the real world and demonstrate a clear purpose for learning mathematical skills.


All children at The Arbours Primary Academy have a reading book and a reading record to take home.

The reading books are phonetically decodable and link to the sounds they are learning in school.

We invite parents to share a reading opportunity with their children two mornings per week. Reading at home is promoted and the class with the collectively highest number of 'reads' across the week win the weekly ready trophy and are celebrated in our Friday Celebration Assembly.

Reading is taught daily through Read Write Inc and then Talk For Reading.

A love of reading is developed through the experience of high quality texts from a variety of authors during the Talk for Reading Writing sessions and through use of the school library.

Even our classes are named after our favourite children's authors!


Modern Foreign Languages 

Each year group in Key Stage 2 receives Spanish lessons.

From 2014, the National Curriculum requires all Key Stage 2 children to learn a language at school and The Arbours Primary Academy has chosen to teach French.


David Ross Education Trust and British Values

The Trust is very supportive of the ethos of promoting British Values, and preparing our pupils for success in a modern Britain. A heavy reliance is placed upon broadening horizons for each and every child and this includes developing the core skills of tolerance, respect, teamwork, resilience and building self esteem. These are all values and qualities that we feel are relevant in order to play a full and meaningful role in society, and are promoted via our extensive house system that lends itself to cultural and sporting competition, democratic principles, social mixing, the development of greater pastoral care and enhanced PSHE.

At The Arbours Primary Academy we uphold and teach pupils about the British Values which are defined as:

  • democracy
  • rule of law
  • individual liberty
  • mutual respect
  • tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs

These values are taught explicitly through Personal, Social, Health and Emotional (PSHE), and Religious Education (RE).  We also teach the British Values through planning and delivering a broad and balanced curriculum, and the way we run our Academy (embodying respect, democracy and tolerance of all).

The school takes opportunities to actively promote British Values through our whole school themed assemblies, whole school systems and structures such as our tea and cake sessions with the head teacher. We also actively promote the British values through ensuring that our curriculum planning and delivery includes real opportunities for exploring these values. Actively promoting British Values also means challenging pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British Values, including ‘extremist’ views.

Download our British Values Document

These values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:


Democracy is an important value at our school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through school council as well as whole school elections.

The children have also worked together to agree our school rules and behavior policy. These are available in each classroom and actively used by children and adults influencing what is an agreed acceptable behaviour. In addition some assemblies and whole school focus events teach children about democracy.

The Rule of Law

The importance of laws and rules, whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days. Our behaviour codes are clear and children are given verbal warnings supported by the coloured stages display. Children are asked to identify which aspect of the rules they have broken to ensure that this connection is made and understood. Perfect Purple has been introduced to reward children for expected behaviour and following the chosen set of rules. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves, and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from authorities such as the police, fire service, ambulance etc. are regular parts of our calendar and help reinforce this message.

Individual Liberty

Pupils are actively encouraged to make choices at our school, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we provide boundaries for our children to make choices safely, through the provision of a safe environment and planned curriculum. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our e-Safety teaching and PSHE lessons. Pupils are given the freedom to make choices, e.g. signing up for extra-curricular clubs, choose the level of challenge in lessons and are becoming increasingly more involved in child–led learning, e.g. planning and delivering child led assemblies and evaluating assemblies, influencing how adults deliver content in future assemblies.

Mutual respect

Our school ethos and behaviour policy are based around core Christian values such as ‘respect’ and ‘responsibility’ and these values determine how we live as a community at The Arbours Primary Academy. Assemblies are led by staff and children as well as visitor speakers from our community on a regular basis. Anti-bullying assemblies and programmes on human rights teaching, all reflect our commitment to mutual respect. Equally our charity work and links with the local community helps in teaching mutual respect. Children and adults alike, including visitors, are challenged if they are disrespectful in any way. Values are highly visible around the school and can be seen in posters, certificates and as part of our agreed codes.

Tolerance of those Different Faiths and Beliefs

Our school ethos and behaviour policy are based around core Christian values such as ‘respect’ and ‘responsibility’ and these values determine how we live as a community at Kings Heath Primary School. Assemblies are based on the Jigsaw PSHE scheme and are central to how we expect everyone to go about their life at our school. Anti-bullying assemblies and programmes on human rights teaching, all reflect our commitment to mutual respect. Equally our charity work and links with the local community helps in teaching mutual respect. Children and adults alike, including visitors, are challenged if they are disrespectful in any way. Values are highly visible around the school and can be seen in posters, certificates and as part of our agreed codes.  

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