Leigh St Mary's Church of England Primary School

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Leigh St Mary’s Church of England Primary School

Curriculum Design Statement


The curriculum at Leigh St Mary’s is designed to be rich, ambitious, broad, balanced and enjoyable. We strive to deliver high expectations for all pupils with tailored and adaptive approaches used to teach the ambitious curriculum to all.

The objectives in the National Curriculum form the core subjects of English, mathematics and science and the foundation subjects of computing, history, geography, art and design, design technology, music, physical education, languages (French), PSHE  and religious education.

At Leigh St Mary’s the curriculum endeavours to provide our children with the knowledge and skills needed for every stage of their educational journey. Through our curriculum design we provide a coherent, structured, academic curriculum that leads to sustained mastery for all and opportunities for a greater depth of understanding to challenge and extend.

The curriculum at Leigh St Mary’s is designed to ensure that research around cognitive science is used in ways to help children’s learning become more memorable. The curriculum aims to use threshold concepts or ‘big ideas’ that shape pupils’ thinking within each subject. The same threshold concepts are explored in every year group and, throughout their learning pathway from Early Years to Year 6, pupils will gradually deepen their understanding of them.

At Leigh St Mary’s the curriculum is designed to provide powerful knowledge taught in ways that enable pupils to ignite prior learning and use and strengthen their long-term memories. As a result, pupils will process, link and understand new knowledge in more purposeful ways. By creating subject schemas, the curriculum is planned and organised to link learning throughout their educational journey. In each subject, threshold concepts are used as the basis for these schemas. Each threshold concept has its own facets of knowledge which help to strengthen learning connections. 

Curriculum plans help pupils form schemas by:

  • using learning concepts as the basis for schemas
  • strengthening those schemas with knowledge
  • deepening knowledge connections through carefully sequenced teaching and learning.

Our curriculum is language rich with a focus on building pupils’ vocabulary from Early Years to Year 6. We understand that expanding pupils vocabulary correlates to academic success and at Leigh St Mary’s we prioritise high quality conversation and questioning, explicit teaching of vocabulary and engagement with a wide variety of high quality and carefully chosen texts. We promote reading and a love of books throughout our pupils’ education.

The social and emotional needs and wellbeing of the pupils within Leigh St Mary’s are paramount. As well as teaching a high quality, rich and academic curriculum, our expectation is that pupils demonstrate our school’s Christian values. Themes such as kindness, empathy, compassion and tolerance are integral. We design opportunities for pupils to explore and uphold these values of good citizenship. Pupils at Leigh St Mary’s leave our school ready for their next step; equipped with the skills, knowledge and strong morals to be a force for good in this world.

Reading at Leigh St Mary's CE Primary School

At Leigh St Mary’s, every child will experience a rich and varied reading diet. From the moment a child accepts their place into our Early Years setting to their leaving at the end of Year 6, we will provide a stimulating diet of books. These will support the early stages of learning to read, offer a wide and enriching choice of books for reading for pleasure and teach a full English and reading curriculum through high quality text choices. We want to instil a love of reading that will continue throughout their lives.

We understand that reading fluency is achieved through the systematic teaching of phonics. We also know that understanding and comprehension is a thread of equal importance that needs to intertwine with fluency at every milestone.

Phonics at Leigh St Mary's Church of England Primary School  


Here at Leigh St Mary's we teach Sounds-Write as our whole school phonics programme. Sounds-Write is a brilliant phonics programme for all pupils. All of our staff are Sounds-Write trained and we consistently deliver the Sounds-Write approach to teaching phonics. Please visit the Sounds-Write homepage for more information.  

Sounds-Write at Leigh St Mary's which is also shared on the Wigan Education Authority SEND Website

Curriculum Overviews 

RE at Leigh St Mary's CE Primary School

Religious Education Curriculum documents are taken from the Manchester Diocese Syllabus and Understanding Christianity Documents 

Useful Department for Education Links: