Aims of the curriculum

  • To develop students knowledge and understanding about the planet we all live on
  • To provide students with the skills to illustrate, research and refine their understanding
  • To ensure that students are given a grounded understanding of key geographical concepts
  • Enable students to be able to reach conclusions and begin to question the world around them
  • To provide continuous engagement in key contemporary issues such as climate change and sustainability

Aims of the curriculum

  • To consolidate and enhance skills acquired at KS3
  • To nurture independence through a variety of teaching and learning methods including self and peer assessment and using assessment criteria as a fundamental tool for progression
  • To equip students with the love of learning and appreciation of language and literature
  • To extend reading, writing and speaking and listening with the view of meeting or exceeding individual potential at the end of the Key Stage
  • To offer a challenging curriculum that prepares students for further education.

Core curriculum

Aims of the curriculum

  • To promote knowledge and understanding of religious issues whilst instilling a sense of spirituality in each pupil
  • To make the teachings of the Church accessible and meaningful to our pupils so they can fully appreciate, and participate in, the Catholic nature of the school
  • To promote the ideals of empathy, tolerance and understanding amongst our pupils as they examine the religions of Hinduism, Islam and Sikhism
  • To promote an understanding of the personal, social and moral issues that are relevant the pupils experiences
  • To instil in each pupil a deeper understanding of faith and belief in God

Aims of the curriculum

These are the essential skills and processes in physical education that pupils need to learn to make progress:

Developing skills in physical activity

Pupils should be able to:

  • Refine and adapt skills into techniques
  • Develop the range of skills they use
  • Develop the precision, control and fluency of their skills

Aims of the curriculum

The history curriculum aims for all young people to become:

  • successful learners who enjoy learning, make progress and achieve
  • confident individuals who are able to live safe, healthy and fulfilling lives
  • responsible citizens who make a positive contribution to society.

Aims of the curriculum

At St Thomas More we aim to provide students with an exciting and relevant programme of study which will enable them to progress in to Key Stage 4 with the knowledge and skills required to be a success and reach or exceed their potential.

We have chosen to allow our students to progress and prepare for their future in Computing and Computer Science. We believe this will allow students to make informed decisions at Key Stage 4, their prospects for KS5 or employment.

The Mathematics Department at St Thomas More aims to promote the appreciation and enjoyment of mathematics for all students. Staff are enthusiastic about their subject and aim to show, where possible, the applications of mathematics in everyday life.

Aims of the curriculum

The department aims to provide students with the opportunity to become familiar with both the spoken and written language, as well as the culture of French and German speaking countries. We aim to give students the opportunity to fully participate in a range of language experiences. This is achieved with high quality teaching and learning as well as a focus on high expectations. All pupils will study in Year 7 from French or German. Some students will have the opportunity to study a second language in Year 8. Grammar is fully embedded at Key Stage 3 to ensure rapid progression at Key Stage 4.

Music at St Thomas More is vibrant, enthusiastic and a key part of whole school life. All students study music throughout KS3 and then have the option to continue their studies into KS4/5. In 2017, we achieved our highest set of year 11 results with 87.6% pass rate and a progress 8 score of +0.96.

At Key Stage 3, students receive a lesson every fortnight. There is an emphasis on learning through practical activities, transforming  students into musicians and promoting team work skills, self-confidence and self-discipline. The curriculum has been devised to encourage students to show initiative, take on challenge and to develop their creativity. Practical music making is most definitely at the heart.

In Year 7, students complete a musical baseline assessment from which we aim to build the necessary skills required for students to be able to create and perform their own music. Our KS3 curriculum is focused around musical and skill development through assessment objectives of solo and ensemble performance, composition and critical engagement. We deliver whole class singing to year 7, ukulele tuition to year 8 as well as keyboard skills and tuned percussion ensemble to all of years 7, 8 & 9.

KS3 Curriculum overview

Year 7

  • Baseline assessments through performing, composing and listening activities.
  • The Power of the Voice.
  • Tuned percussion ensemble workshop.
  • Introduction to the keyboard and staff notation.

Year 8

  • The Blues - developing keyboard skills.
  • The Four Chords - ukulele workshop.
  • Tuned percussion ensemble skill development.

Year 9

  • Film Music Composition 
  • Riffs & Hooks - World Music Exploration
  • Theme and Variations

Progression after Key Stage 3

Students can opt to study music at Key Stage 4 through studying BTEC Level 2 First Award in Music. KS4 Music students also receive instrumental lessons free of charge to support their learning.

They can then choose to progress further and specialise further in music at Key Stage 5.

Additional classes and extra curricular activities

We offer a wide variety of musical instrument tuition through our close links with Forest Arts Music Hub (http://www.forestartscentre.co.uk) and currently have seven visiting instrumental teachers delivering tuition on violin, cello, flute, clarinet, trumpet, trombone, drum kit, guitar (electric/bass/acoustic), ukulele, voice and steel pans. 

Students are also welcome to rehearse and develop their skills within the department during break and lunch times.

The department also runs:

Junior Choir: Tuesday lunchtimes & Thursday 3pm - 4pm.

Senior Voices: Tbc 

String Ensemble: Friday 3pm - 3:30pm

Through taking an active part in the extra curricular activities on offer in the Performing Arts department, students have many exciting performance opportunities and experiences open to them. As a catholic school, our instrumentalists and singers regularly contribute to whole school worship, presentation evenings, Christmas and Easter services as well as coffee mornings for our local parish and OAP community. They also give concerts in our local care home, soup kitchen, in assemblies as well as in annual whole school musical productions and concerts. Our music students form a vital part of the school's Catholic ethos.

We also take part in local events in partnership with our music hub. These include the Big Sing and Big Orchestra concerts which brings together musicians from lots of different primary and secondary schools from across Walsall to perform together. National events include Voice in a Million at Wembley Arena where choirs from primary and secondary schools across the country perform together in a mass concert.

We also engage our students in local professional concerts such as the CBSO KS3 Schools Concerts held at Symphony Hall. Students also compose and perform in professional masterclasses with musicians from the internationally renowned Orchestra of the Swan, based in Stratford, who work regularly with the Royal Shakespeare Company and the BBC. 

 

Aims of the curriculum

Scientific thinking

  • Using scientific ideas and models to explain phenomena and developing them creatively to generate and test theories
  • Critically analysing and evaluating evidence from observations and experiments.

Applications and implications of science

  • Exploring how the creative application of scientific ideas can bring about technological developments and consequent changes in the way people think and behave
  • Examining the ethical and moral implications of using and applying science

Aims of the curriculum

  • To promote knowledge and understanding of religious issues whilst instilling a sense of spirituality in each pupil
  • To make the teachings of the Church accessible and meaningful to our pupils so they can fully appreciate, and participate in, the Catholic nature of the school
  • To promote an understanding of the personal, social and moral issues that are relevant the pupils experiences
  • To instil in each pupil a deeper understanding of faith and belief in God

Aims of the curriculum

  • To develop a knowledge and understanding of the different acting methods and devising techniques.
  • To access wider reading and form a range of opinions on current and historical issues.
  • To develop practical, theoretical and literacy skills.
  • To improve communication and confidence.
  • To become a dedicated, supportive and independent learner.