Marcham Primary School | Morland Road | Marcham | Abingdon | OX13 6PY
01865 391448


At Marcham, we aim to provide opportunities for all children to thrive through a commitment to high standards and excellence within an engaging, broad and rich curriculum. The framework of the National Curriculum (September 2014) forms one part of the school curriculum which specifies for pupils, “an introduction to the essential knowledge that they need to be educated citizens”. We welcome our statutory duty to follow its programmes of study, “setting out the ‘matters, skills and processes’ to be taught at each key stage”. We aim to do so creatively, exploring not just what is taught but how it is taught and have employed a more holistic approach to the children’s learning: using a themed approach, exploring the links between the core and foundation subjects and enhancing the children’s experiences through a range of additional events and activities helps them to make better sense of their learning. We also take seriously our commitment to promoting the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of our pupils and aim to prepare them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life.

In consideration of pupils’ varied life experiences and needs, we will ensure that the school curriculum is available to all pupils, with equal and appropriate access to experiences offered regardless of gender, race, faith, disability, colour, nationality or ethnic or national origin .

In all our subjects, we take responsibility for the health and safety of our pupils seriously. We refer to specific documentation;

  • Safe Practice in PE, BA AL PE, Millennium Edition – PE
  • Be Safe – Science
  • CLEAPSS – Science and Technology

Below is an outline of programmes of study for each subject, as set out in the National Curriculum. Details of each class’ curriculum map, which shows the themed approach to our present curriculum, can be found on the Class pages.

Detail of the thematic based curriculum across the school can be found at the end of this document.

If you would like to find out more about the content of the curriculum in your child’s class, please make an appointment to speak with the class teacher, and I’m sure that they would be happy to help.


The overarching aim for English in the National Curriculum is to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment. it aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • read easily, fluently and with good understanding;
  • develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information;
  • acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and the spoken language;
  • appreciate our rich and varied lierary heritage;
  • write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences;
  • use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas;
  • are competent in the art of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.

In addition to these principles, we are committed to providing extra opportunities such as seeing live performances, working with an author, illustrator or poet, participating in performances and taking part in a range of discussion contexts.


The National Curriculum for Mathematics aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately;
  • reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language;
  • can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.


The National Curriculum for Science aims to ensure that all pupils;

  • develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics;
  • develop understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science through different types of science enquiries that help them to answer scientific questions about the world around them;
  • are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future.


The National Curriculum for Art and Design aims to ensure that all pupils;

  • produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences;
  • become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques;
  • evaluate and analyse creative works using the language of art, craft and design;
  • know about great artists, craft makers and designers, and understand the historical and cultural development of their art forms.


The curriculum at Marcham for Citizenship and Personal, Social and Health education aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • learn and achieve;
  • develop confidence and responsibility and make the most of their abilities;
  • prepare to play an active role as responsible citizens;
  • develop a healthy, safer lifestyle;
  • develop good relationships and respect the differences between people.


The National Curriculum for Design and Technology aims to ensure that all pupils to:

  • develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world;
  • critique, evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others;
  • understand and apply the principles of nutrition and learn how to cook.

Although the following two subjects are not set out in the National Currulum, RE remains statutory but follows a locally agreed syllabus, and PSCHE continues to be taught in line with our commitment to address the “whole” child within our broader curruculum.


The National Curriculum for Geography aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • develop contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places – both terrestrial and marine – including their defining physical and human characteristics and how these provide geographical context for understanding the actions of processes;
  • understand the processes that give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world, how these are interdependant and how they bring spatial variation and change over time;
  • are competent in the geographical skills needed to:
    • collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that  deepen their understanding of geographical processes;
    • interpret a range of sources of geographical information, includong maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS);
    • communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps and writing at length.


The National Curriculum for History aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • know and understand the history of these islands as a coherent, chronological narrative, from the earliest times to the present day: how people’s lives have shaped this nation and how Britain has influenced and been influenced by the wider world;
  • know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations; the expansion and dissolution of empires; characteristic features of past non-European societies; achievements and follies of mankind;
  • gain and deploy a historically-grounded understanding of abstract terms such as empire, civilisation, parliament and pleasantry;
  • understand historical concepts such as continuity and change, cause and consequence, similarity, difference and significance and use them to make connections, draw contrasts, analyse trends, frame historically-valid questions and create their own structured accounts including written narratives and analyses;
  • understand the methods of historical enquiry, including how evidence is used rigorously to make historical claims, and discern how and why contrasting arguments and interpretations of the past have been constructed.
  • gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts, understanding the connections between local, regional, national and international history; between culltural, economic, military, political, religious and social history; and between short and long term timescales.


The National Curriculum for Computing aims to ensure that all pupils;

  • can understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation;
  • can analyse problems in computational terms, and have repeated practical experience of writing computer programmes in order to solve such problems;
  • can evaluate and apply information technology, including new or unfamiliar technologies, analitically to solve problems;
  • are responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology.


The National Curriculum for Languages aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources;
  • speak with increasing confidence, fluency and spontaneity, finding ways of communicating what they want to say, including through discussion and asking questions, and continually improving the accuracy of their pronunciation and intonation;
  • can write at varying length, for difference purposes and audiences, using the variety of grammatical structures that they have learned;
  • discover and develop an appreciation of a range of writing in the language studied.


The National Curriculum for Music aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • perform, listen to, review and eveluate music across a range of historical period, genres, stles and traditions, including the works of the great composers and musicians;
  • learn to sing and to use their voices, to create and compose music on their own and with others, have the opportunitu to learn a musical instrument, use technology appropriately and have the opportunity to progress to the next level of musical excellence;
  • understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated, including through the interrelated dimensions: pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture, structure and appropriate musical notations.

The Teaching of Phonics and Reading at Marcham CE Primary School.

In Foundation Stage, KS1 and throughout our early reading programme we are committed to the teaching of phonics. We do so using Letters and Sounds, supplemented by Jolly Phonics and Phonics Play. We continue this part of their learning journey through the teaching of grammar, punctuation and spellings.

Letters and Sounds is a phonics resource published by the Department for Education and Skills in 2007. It aims to build children’s speaking and listening skills in their own right as well as to prepare children for learning to read by developing their phonic knowledge and skills. It sets out a detailed and systematic programme for teaching phonic skills for children starting by the age of five, with the aim of them becoming fluent readers by age seven. There are six overlapping phases.

Jolly Phonics is a child centred approach to teaching literacy through synthetic phonics. With actions for each of the 42 letter sounds, the multi-sensory method is very motivating and engaging for the pupils.

Phonics Play is a web-based interactive site with games and fun resources to augment the children’s understanding of Phonics and support teachers and teaching assistants in their planning and delivery.

For those children who need extra support with their reading at KS1, we use Fischer Family Trust  intervention (Wave 3) to help diminish the differences between them and their peers. This intensive 10-20 week daily programme accelerates their learning so that they can access class or group teaching and has proved to be highly successful.

We acknowledge that, although outcomes for Phonics at Marcham are good, there are a few children who need still extra support as they continue beyond KS1. We use, among other tailored programmes for specific need, the Project X intervention. Based on research, Project X is a modern, reading and writing programme with highly motivating books and interactive digital resources. Although specially developed to motivate boys and address the gender gap in literacy, we have found its appeal universal, inspiring both boys and girls and, again, leading to successful outcomes.

By the end of KS2 our Reading levels are significantly above both local and national averages and, in 2016, ranked in the top 5% of schools.


The National Curriculum for Physical Education aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • develop competence to excel in a broad range of physical activities;
  • are physically active for sustained periods of time;
  • engage in competative sports and activities;
  • lead healthy active lives.

Schools have a legal obligation to provide Religious Education for all pupils and Religious Education is therefore part of all pupils’ entitlement under the Education Reform Act of 1988 and the Education Act of 2002.


The curriculum for Religious Education, in line with the Oxfordshire Agreed Syllabus (2015-2020), aims to enable pupils to:

  • understand the nature, role and influence of different religions, traditions, beliefs and lifestyles in the world;
  • pursue personal quests for meaning, purpose and value;
  • formulate reasoned opinions/arguments in relation to contraversial issues and truth claims;
  • develop understanding of and respect for different beliefs and lifestyles.

Download the Whole School Curriculum here.