Mixed Age Classes

Read this document for information about our mixed year group classes at instow



All schools across the country underwent changes in the curriculum during 2014/15, i.e. what your child learns, how they learn and when they learn. At Instow we reassessed our curriculum to meet the national agenda of raised standards along with a focus on enquiry-led learning for our pupils.


What this means is that teachers will introduce a new topic, find out from your children what they are expert in and importantly what they would like to learn. Our teachers will then plan for a series of lessons in order to cover the learning that interests our pupils, alongside a rigorous target setting system that ensures our children make progress in their skills.


To illustrate this, your child may be about to study Explorers. The discussion in class may cover subjects like:

  • Who were Devon's famous explorers?
  • What happens when someone gets lost at sea?
  • Can I remember a time when I had to be an explorer?
  • Why did people sail off to unknown parts of the world?
  • Is a spaceship also an explorer?


Your child's teacher is then able to look at your child's skill development needs, for example:

  • A group of pupils need to work on paragraphs in their extended writing - plan to offer literacy lessons where pupils will write a longer account, or diary entry, or piece of creative writing to publish as an explorer.
  • A group of pupils are talented with map reading - plan to extend that group with an in-depth task, so that they can develop their independent study skills.
  • A group of pupils don't really have any life experiences of going somewhere new - plan for off-site learning in order to offer these pupils a safe experience to become explorers.


The skills run through any context, so that the next time this group of pupils experience the chance to develop their creative writing skills, they will be expected to be able to know why we have paragraphs and how to use them to good effect for the intended audience.


This is a flavour of how teachers plan a topic over a half termly basis. Running alongside these strategies your child's class teacher also works with colleagues to assess children's work and agree on standards and progression.


Every class teacher sends you a copy of the termly overview of your child's curriculum. In addition this is displayed in class. At our parent's evenings we also share targets and successes with you, so that you are fully informed about your child's progress.


As parents you play a vital role in supporting your child with their home learning, reading, offering them real-life experiences outside of school,  as well as working with us in partnership to ensure your child feels safe and happy in school. We believe that happy children will be open and responsive to new experiences in their learning.


If you have any questions about our curriculum at Instow and how you may be able to help, please ask your child's class teacher.


Mrs Knight and team