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Whole School Overview



The Dundale Curriculum has been designed to include and engage all learners, respond to the needs of all children and relate to the context of our community.  We have planned a broad and balanced curriculum that allows for depth of teaching and learning access to all subject areas whilst offering new and exciting learning opportunities for everyone.  The curriculum not only develops each child academically but socially, morally, spiritually and culturally in order to prepare them for their place in the wider world.  We aim to develop each child’s aspirations for their future by seeking opportunities to make links to the wider world through community projects and educational visits alongside a developing variety of extra-curricular activities.


At Dundale, we refer to the ‘Dundale Way’ which forms the core of everything we do. The Dundale Way is split into eight key areas:


  • Meet and Greet
  • Classroom Ready
  • Ready to Learn
  • Learning Assessment
  • Visual Support
  • Knowing more and remembering more
  • Vocab teaching 
  • Common Language 


This encompasses our behaviour curriculum, national curriculum and wider curriculum.  We believe that in order for children to succeed then focus needs to be on:

  • knowing more, remembering more, doing more.
  • understanding more, engaging more, communicating more, experiencing more


We have invested a significant amount of time in developing a knowledge-rich curriculum to give our pupils access to the very best curriculum content. This ensures that pupils secure a solid base to build on as they move through school and into Key Stage 3 and beyond.


The Dundale curriculum is designed with knowledge at its heart to ensure that children develop a strong vocabulary base and an extensive understanding of the world.  The curriculum promotes long-term learning and we believe that progress means knowing more and remembering more.  As pupils learn the content of the curriculum they are making progress. We have developed a curriculum built on current research regarding how memory works to ensure that children not only have access to 'the best that has been thought and said' but are taught this in a way that ensures children can remember the curriculum content in future years.

We make use of knowledge organisers to ensure children know exactly which information is expected to be learned over the course of their study in a particular subject.  These knowledge organisers are put in books at the beginning of the unit and shared, where appropriate, on the school website.   One of the central aims of the curriculum is to ensure that our pupils are both "interesting and interested". We want them to be 'interesting' to talk to, because they know a great deal about the world and 'interested' in finding out more.  We believe that knowledge breeds curiosity - as pupils learn more about the world they become more curious. It is very difficult to be curious about something that you don't know anything about. We understand that knowledge is 'sticky', in other words, the more pupils know, the easier it is for them to know more.   As a result, we carefully check and activate prior knowledge to ensure our pupils are able to understand and remember new things they are learning.


Our knowledge-rich curriculum is built on the following five principles -


1. Acquisition of 'powerful knowledge' is at the heart of the curriculum

This means that pupils gain knowledge which empowers them to not only understand the world around them but to understand how each subject discipline works in order to extend this knowledge of the world.


2. Knowledge is specified in fine detail

This means that we set out very precisely what pupils will know and be able to do in each subject: we endeavour to leave nothing to chance. If we want pupils to know a specific piece of knowledge we identify when and how this is learned over time.


3. Knowledge is acquired and stored in long-term memory

This means that we expect all pupils to remember their learning into the future. We have planned the curriculum so that there are many chances for pupils to review what they have already learned and secure it in their memories. Review and recall is built into lessons through quizzing, questioning, application of knowledge and, where appropriate, summative testing.


4. Knowledge is carefully sequenced over time

This means that we have thought carefully about the most effective order to learn new curriculum content in.  We have planned the curriculum so that each unit of work in a subject builds directly on what has been learned before. This helps pupils understand and remember their learning more effectively.


5. Knowledge is organised into subject disciplines and links made where appropriate and meaningful

This means that from KS1 we teach individual subjects such as History, Geography, Science, Art and Languages. We treat each subject separately so that pupils have a very clear understanding of what is important about each subject and that their knowledge and skills progress systematically over time in each area of the curriculum. Links are made across subjects where appropriate and meaningful.


Our Dundale Values are also woven throughout the curriculum by :

  • Encouraging all children to be ambitious in their learning
  • Encouraging all children to be resilient when facing challenges to grow their ability to realise that ambition
  • Ensuring inclusion for all children to access an engaging and enriching curriculum and have a focus on inclusion within the values of everyday school life
  • Encouraging children to be reflective about their learning, to develop independence and lay the foundations for our children to achieve their dreams and reach for success