The school follows the requirements of the NI Curriculum. It is our starting point for planning a curriculum that meets the needs of individual children. As a school, we have the responsibility to provide a broad and balanced curriculum for the children. We aim to give every child the opportunity to experience success in learning and to achieve as high a standard as possible.
The curriculum is set out in six Areas of Learning. Although they are set out separately, where appropriate, we integrate learning across the six areas to make relevant connections for the children.
The Areas are:
- Language and Literacy
- Mathematics and Numeracy
- The Arts
- The World Around Us
- Physical Education (PE)
- Personal Development and Mutual Understanding( PDMU)
ICT is taught within its own right and as a tool to access learning across the curriculum.
Thinking skills and Personal Capabilities (TSPC) is infused into subjects. Personal skills and capabilities underpin success in all aspects of life. We seek to give the children worthwhile experiences across the curriculum which allow them to develop skills in:
- Thinking, Problem-Solving and Decision-Making
- Self – Management
- Working with Others
- Managing Information
- Being Creative
We recognise that children need to interact effectively in the world around them, express themselves creatively to progress their learning of the wider curriculum and to communicate confidently using the four modes of language: Talking and Listening, Reading and Writing.
Each teacher seeks to ensure that the children’s language and literacy experiences take place within a rich, stimulating and active classroom environment. Each teacher focuses on developing each child’s ability to understand and use language, both spoken and written, as an integral part of learning in all areas of the curriculum.
A systematic programme for the teaching of reading and the acquisition of Phonics is in place. The children have opportunities to read individually and in small groups, as well as participating in modelled, shared, guided and accelerated reading programmes. The school has a well-stocked and inviting library in which to read and to which books are regularly added. The children are encouraged to develop a real love for books and the disposition to read. The pupils visit the library in Lisnaskea.
From the beginning, the children have opportunities to experiment with their own written communication. They have opportunities to read their own writing and have their writing valued.
As the children begin to write with more competence, they are helped to express their ideas clearly using their increasing vocabulary and knowledge of sentence structure. The teachers take time to model appropriate forms of writing with the children. The children progress to using more imaginative and increasingly precise vocabulary and more proficient use of spelling and punctuation as well as presenting their ideas and information more logically and coherently.
The children acquire early mathematical concepts through activities that involve sorting, matching, comparing, classifying, and making patterns and sequences in a variety of contexts. These activities involve the children in playing, exploring and investigating, talking, listening to others and asking and answering questions. Talking about their work, reasoning and describing approaches involved has a high priority in each classroom.
The children are given opportunities, on a regular basis, to develop their skills in mental mathematics, to estimate and approximate, and to investigate and make simple predictions in all areas of mathematics and across the curriculum.
Numeracy is a life skill used in making everyday decisions for adults. Hence mathematical ideas are presented to the children in meaningful contexts. The children learn through a wide range of practical activities, including games to consolidate their learning.
We have developed Maths Trails in our school grounds for all classes. These trails enable our pupils to use their mathematics in real problem-solving scenarios outdoors.
The pupils have opportunities to investigate the world in which they live through themes and topics which emphasise 'Connected Learning'.
The World Around Us incorporates History, Geography and Science and Technology.
The school is nestled in between two wonderful buildings of great historical and architectural worth- The Lisnaskea Workhouse and Castle Balfour. The school particpates in various activities in the town including Fair Day when we all dress up and re-enact an old Fair day.
The children explore the nature of the world around them from the perspectives of geography, history and science and technology. The natural curiosity of the children is valued, fostered and extended.
Some topics have a strong historical dimension to them such as the Great Fire of London in Year 3 or World War 2 in Year 4. Others have strong geographical element such as Northern Ireland my country. Geographical elements include looking at maps and exploring where we live. Examples of strong scientific topics include The Plant Kingdom. However many topics include aspects of all three subject areas: history, geography and science.
The Arts comprise of Music, Art and Drama. The staff are very gifted in these areas. The school seeks to include the expertise of parents and members of the community.
Pupils can avail on tuition in flute, clarinet, piano, voice, guitar, drumming and brass. The school choir has sung in churches, residential homes, Crom Estate, and in the Odyssey in Belfast.
Artists are brought into school to work on specific skills, projects or for pupils to observe the artists and their skills at work.
Drama and Dance
Pupils are regularly taken to the Ardhowen Theatre in Enniskillen, Devenish College and other venues to watch live stage productions. A trip to the Opera House, Belfast is organised very four years. We have enjoyed many travelling theatre productions in school including: Stig of the Dump, Jack and the Beanstalk and Tom's Midnight Garden. The school puts on a Christmas Production annually and the Year 7 pupils put on a production for their Leavers Celebration night.
Our PE programme seeks to give pupils the opportunity to frequently and regularly participate in a range of enjoyable and challenging physical activities that develop and consolidate their fundamental movement skills. The four key areas are Athletics, Dance, Games and Gymnastics up to P4. A fifth element of swimming is added to P5-7 curriculum.
The school accesses facilitation and coaching a wide variety of sports including tennis, Ju-jitsu, archery, orienteering, Cycling proficiency, as well as football, badminton, netball hockey, cross-country and cricket.
Personal Development and Mutual Understanding (PDMU) is now a statutory element of the NI Curriculum. It focuses on the pupils’ emotional development, health and safety, relationships with others and the development of moral thinking, values and actions. PDMU encourages children ‘to become more personally, emotionally, socially and physically effective to lead healthy, safe and fulfilled lives and to become confident, independent and responsible citizens, making informed and responsible choices and decisions throughout their lives.’ CCEA 2007. We could not wish for more!
The school follows CCEA guidance and supplements with the PATHS programme.