Curriculum - a detailed description
The teaching of Key Skills is given a high priority at Uplands. Each of the 4 Needs Lead Provision Groups teach Literacy and Numeracy discreetly in order to develop skills effectively and to encourage exceptional progress. Each student is planned for individually across all the strands of literacy and numeracy to provide a personalised programme of study that will be both in line with prior achievement and will be based around resources that will stimulate and interest them. Our Literacy and Numeracy Learning Ladders form the basis of the curriculum and reflect the statuatory requirements of the new curriculum for 2014. Progress is planned for via our Key Skills Focus Sheets for each student which are updated termly. Achievement is logged via Bsquared. Feedback is given to parents at Annual Review, parents evenings which are held 3 times a year and via the end of year annual report.
Knowledge and understanding of the world
Knowledge and Understanding covers History, Geography, RE and Science and is taught both in KS3 and in KS4 via a topic based curriculum. At KS3 and KS4 overall theme is the same: Term 1: New beginning, Term 2: Festivals and Celebrations, Term 3: Our world and Beyond, Term 4: people and places, Term 5: The Natural World, Term 6: Moving On. However, the topics covered within these broad themes are chosen to be appropriate for each Key Stage and provision group and are covered on a rolling 3 year programme at KS3 and 2 year programme in KS4. The four subjects are given suitable focus and weighting according to the needs of the student group, and are embedded into the themes. Spiritual, moral, social and cultural education is also taught via our Knowledge and Understanding topics with visits and trips being organised to enhance this aspect of the curriculum.
Personal and physical development
This is a very important part of the curriculum for most of our students and Uplands. It includes PHSCE, PE, and Work Related Learning. In PHSCE all students follow an appropriate programme of study which is linked to the needs identified on their IEP. Physical activity is offered to meet the needs of the individual student. For example students with ASD may start the day with exercise in order to meet their sensory needs and prepare them to work. Most students have the opportunity to swim once a week and to experience trampolining or rebound therapy. All students from KS3 onwards engage in Work Related Learning. Skills are developed in school at KS3 by working in the coffee shop, the garden café and in the Uplands Charity shop. At KS4 students will engage in ASDAN qualifications linked to Work Related Learning to further develop their skills. These students also apply their in other settings such at Pennyhooks Farm, Wickstead Riding Stables, Greatwood Equine Management and the Uplands Charity shop. All students are expected to make a meaningful contribution to their community via Work Related Learning or Social Enterprise. Key Skills opportunities are identified and consolidated in real life contexts throughout all aspects of our PPD curriculum area.
Creative Arts is taught at KS3 and KS4 and consists of: Music, Drama, Art and DT. Art and Drama are taught by the class teachers and the theme for these lessons comes out of the overall topic for the term. For most groups, Music is taught by our Creative Arts Director who is a music specialist. The creative arts is enriched by a wide variety of external visits and workshops which all students have access to through the year and by our twice yearly whole school performances. Uplands has a well established and supported choir that regularly perform in public. Students across the school have the opportunity to join in Dance Club which is extremely popular and results in public performances.