Abbey Road, Barnstaple, Devon EX31 1JU

01271 342579

Pilton Infants' School

Learning For Life

 Our Curriculum Intent

At Pilton Infants’ School the curriculum is designed with our children’s needs in mind.  Our cohorts are changing over time with an increasingly wide catchment area, a large number of pre-schools (17) and an increase in the range of ethnic backgrounds and languages spoken at home.  In recent years, we’ve noticed a dramatic decline in children’s spoken communication, vocabulary and understanding and this has become one of the key drivers in the planning and delivery of our curriculum.  For example, ensuring that children speak in full sentences, explain their reasoning in maths, retelling stories and developing a wide vocabulary.

We build on children’s prior learning, providing first hand learning experiences, supporting  children to develop interpersonal skills, build resilience, perseverance, independence, kindness, good manners and become creative, critical thinkers.

We promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.  We do this through our Learning Heroes, school and class rules, PSHE, assemblies and through the way we model behaviours in school.  Every child is recognised as a unique individual. We celebrate and welcome differences within our school community.

The ability to learn is underpinned by the teaching of basic skills, knowledge, concepts and values.

We  provide enhancement opportunities for all children, ensuring disadvantaged pupils have access to the same opportunities.   We believe that childhood should be a happy, investigative and enquiring time in our lives where there are no limits to curiosity and there is a thirst for new experiences and knowledge.  Through our Learning Heroes, we promote positive attitudes, which reflect the values and skills needed to promote responsibility for learning and future success.

Community involvement is an essential part of our curriculum as we celebrate local traditions, learning new skills to enable the children to take an active role in events throughout the year.  Parental engagement is crucial to every child’s success and we strive to involve parents during their child’s learning journey.  For example, we hold workshops, invite parents to contribute to topics, hold a face-to-face parents’ evening every term and share learning success through our weekly newsletter.

Children leave the school with a sense of belonging to a community where they have the confidence and skills to make decisions, self-evaluate, make connections and become lifelong learners.  By the time they leave us, they are well prepared for the transition to Key Stage 2.

We use a topic based approach to plan our curriculum which is informed by the National Curriculum, and wider local, national and global events.  We plan our themes as a whole school, ensuring every aspect is covered, in order to make seamless links between subjects and to make learning meaningful, relevant, interesting and engaging.  We do not follow a rolling programme because we strongly believe in adapting our topics to suit the needs and interests of each year group. We are however, in the process of developing a curriculum map which will enable pupils to consolidate prior learning and build upon the skills and knowledge they have already learned so that their learning becomes embedded in their long term memory.

At Pilton Infants’ School we believe that children learn best when:

  • They are secure and happy
  • They are excited about what they are learning
  • They are given opportunities to investigate, explore and discover
  • They are allowed to make choices, take risks and learn and build on consequences
  • Their efforts are valued and recognised, both at home and at school
  • They are well prepared for the school day and arrive on time
  • They have good attendance
  • They can see that staff, parents and carers are working together
  • They understand the next steps in their learning and know how to improve
  • They are encouraged to be responsible and independent .



Speaking, Listening and Communication skills

 At Pilton Infants' there is a significant emphasis placed on speech, language, vocabulary and communication skills which are fundamental to successful learning.

Did you know that:

  • vocabulary at the age of 5 years is a powerful predictor of GCSE achievement
  • Children whose speech, language and communication is not resolved by age 5 are highly likely to have lifelong literacy difficulties 
  • 2/3 7-14 year olds with serious behaviour problems have language impairment
  • 80% of children with emotional and behavioural difficulties have language difficulties which are largely unrecognised. During the first few weeks in Reception we screen all the children to ensure any child with a speech/language issue is quickly identified and intervention put in place to target the difficulties they are experiencing. We have skilled staff who deliver any additional support necessary and rapid improvement is usually made as a result of this extra help. All our teachers and teaching assistants have been trained to deliver language rich learning experiences which will help develop their communication skills and promote a wider range of interesting vocabulary.

 English, Maths and Foundation subjects

English intent

Maths intent

Science intent

Music and RE intent

PE intent

History intent 

High quality history lessons inspire children to want to know more about the past and to think and act as historians. By linking learning to a range of topics, children have opportunities to investigate and interpret the past; understanding chronology, build an overview of their own history, Britain and the wider world. Most importantly, they develop a rich geographical vocabulary .  See the 'Geography link above to see the curriculum content.

Geography intent

At Pilton Infants’ we aim for a high quality geography curriculum which will inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people. . We also want children to develop geographical skills: using simple maps, globes and digital resources to name and identify countries, continents and oceans.  We want children to enjoy and love learning about geography by gaining  knowledge and skills through first hand experiences and educational visits wherever possible, using our own very special coastal and country environment whenever we can. Click the 'Geography' link above to see the curriculum content.


Art and design intent (coming soon)

ICT intent

Relationships and Health Education (PSHE) 

We use a PSHE program called JIGSAW to deliver our PSHE throughout school. The Programme covers every aspect of PSHE which is a statutory requirement from September 2020. More information and scheme of work to follow soon.