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topic based planning format

Discussion in 'Headteachers' started by mms1, Jun 15, 2019.

  1. mms1

    mms1 Occasional commenter

    Hi all,

    I am in the process of completely revising how we teach,plan and assess. As a school we agreed that topic/thematic based teaching was the way forward for us. We are a small mixed year primary school with higher than average levels of SEN.

    I am now looking for a functional and efficient planning format to replace what in truth were over detailed and time consuming weekly individual subject plans. My teachers are very creative and have come up with a format that is not dissimilar to 'Cornerstones'; it includes a central theme with the subjects being delivered surrounding it with key skills identified for English and Maths. My staff would like to run each topic/theme for 4 weeks producing a learning map for each 4 week block rather than weekly plans for English and Maths.

    My question is: has anyone else moved to a similar curriculum model and what expectations have you set for planning documents?

    The 4 week example they have proposed includes spaces for weekly additional info and reviewing.

    Any help would be great.
  2. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    We don't have any expectations for planning, staff can plan as and how they prefer. We have Medium term plans which are provided for the staff to work from, what they do with them is down to each individual teacher.
  3. mms1

    mms1 Occasional commenter

    Hi Carrie V. I am really interested to learn more about how this works for you and so very pleased to hear that you're doing it! Is it ok to PM you?

    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  4. lindenlea

    lindenlea Star commenter

    (Excuse me)
    I'm sorry

    Yes I know your teachers' plans will be much more rigorous than the topic webs I did in 1972 but it still makes me laugh.
    lardylegs, Morgelyn and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  5. mms1

    mms1 Occasional commenter

    Thanks for the input Lindenlea.
    lindenlea likes this.
  6. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    lardylegs and digoryvenn like this.
  7. digoryvenn

    digoryvenn Lead commenter

    Everything goes round in circles.

    Just let the teachers plan as they wish. That's what I did.
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2019
  8. mms1

    mms1 Occasional commenter

    Thanks to everyone for the feedback. Whilst I do remember the previous cycle of topic based curriculum, I was a pupil and was blissfully ignorant to the demands of what would become our modern education system. I'm sure back then teachers were not expected to evidence their planning to the same forensic detail as I was expected to provide when I was a class teacher 10 years ago.
    My question to those Heads now delivering creative/topic based curriculums is: how much formal planning do you demand of your teachers? I am asking my teachers to plan half termly topics on one page, this will include English and Maths and describe the skills they will be teaching and the outcomes. I don't feel inclined to then ask them to produce detailed plans for individual subjects. They should in effect be able to follow the topic map covering each of the described skills as they see fit across multiple subjects. My intention is that they put more of their time and energy into creating memorable learning experiences and less time on administration. Am I being too trusting?

    What do you expect from your teachers?
  9. Camokidmommy

    Camokidmommy Established commenter

    You're not being too trusting. The evidence will be in the children's books, on the walls, in floor books or wherever.

    Talk to the children and teachers, they'll be the evidence.

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