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Cultural Capital, Vocabulary & Diversity

 

At Collis, we prioritise strategies to address social disadvantage and aim for all children to experience ‘the best that is’ in our world. We achieve this through focusing our curriculum and pedagogical approach on the development of cultural capital and the broadening and deepening of children’s vocabulary. (Cultural capital is the essential knowledge that pupils need to be educated citizens, introducing them to the best that has been thought and said, and helping to engender an appreciation of human creativity and achievement.)

 

We know through research that often a ‘word gap’ can open between disadvantaged children and their peers before school begins (Sutton Trust Report, 2010). In fact, this achievement gap can start early in a child’s life and continues to widen as children get older (Hart and Risley, 1995). Research indicates that this has a negative impact on reading success, attainment, a child’s behaviour and their mental health. We have a duty to close this gap for our pupils through prioritising phonics and reading, through high quality vocabulary instruction, through engaging parents and developing a love of language. This is evident throughout our teaching. For example, we have a curriculum centred upon quality written and visual texts, we carefully build on pupils’ prior knowledge (their schema), teach guided reading and share texts aloud, use semantic mapping and have a phonics and spelling programme founded upon the developing an interest in and attentiveness to words. Across the curriculum, our teaching of active listening, speaking in full sentences, use of ‘stem sentences’ and ‘sticky vocabulary’ in maths and the foundation subjects, and progression in Tier 2 and 3 vocabulary exemplifies our systematic approach to vocabulary instruction.

 

We promote an understanding of the value of diversity in our school community and in wider society, exploring ethnic, cultural, religious and linguistic diversity with our pupils throughout our carefully planned curriculum and with quality texts.

 

A snapshot of our Collis literature lists

 

 

A snapshot of our Art progression

 

 

A snapshot of our overview of artists

 

 

A snapshot of our History progression with sticky vocabulary highlighted in yellow

 

 

In PE this term Year Four have been learning how to choreograph and perform their own dances. As a reward for all their hard work, a professional dancer came in and delivered an inspirational and engaging dance workshop to all the children. They thoroughly enjoyed learning routines and competing against each other in order to win the final!