At Archbishop Courtenay Primary School, we nurture our children with kindness and compassion, therefore PSHE education is an embedded part of our broad and balanced curriculum. It is given high priority among both pupils and staff and as such we have incorporated PSHE into our ‘Marvelous Monday’ timetable to ensure PSHE is taught each Monday morning across all phases within the school.
Our PSHE curriculum aims to build resilience, strengthen emotional intelligence and develop active empathy. Fundamentally, it teaches our children to love and accept themselves as well as loving and respecting each other. It equips them with foundational principles, skills, habits and a mindset that will improve their mental health, relationships and academic achievement.
Our curriculum prepares our pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of life in an ever-changing world. The wellbeing of every pupil is paramount at Archbishop Courtenay to ensure they learn, thrive and flourish together. Pupils are taught the information they need to make decision to live and enjoy a healthy lifestyle. Pupils are encouraged to play an active role in contributing to school life and are given opportunities to develop a clear understanding of the British Values: Tolerance, Rule of Law, Individual liberty, Democracy and Respect.
Our PSHE curriculum builds a powerful toolkit that helps children learn how to be smart with their heart so that they can grow into thriving adults. We believe that the life of our hearts affects the whole of our life. Pupils are taught that what is in our heart will always be played out. Our lives will be greater or worse, more courageous or more fearful by what is in our heart. Therefore, learning about how to lead our heart, when to lead from our heart, how to process pain, how to hope and how to love others is essential in learning about how to live.
Our PSHE curriculum has five key principles that the children revisit and build on each year. Term 1 is spent on the ‘Get Heartsmart’ unit, in which the children develop their understanding of what it means to be heart smart. We sequence lessons around each area and the language is designed to appeal to all ages of children but is explained at an age appropriate level.
1) Don’t Forget to Let Love in! - I am special. (Learning how important, valued and loved we are)
2) Too Much Selfie isn’t Healthy! - I love others. (Exploring the importance of others and how to love them well)
3) Don’t Hold on to What’s Wrong! - I am a good friend. (Understanding how to process negative emotion and choose forgiveness to restore relationships)
4) Fake is a Mistake! - I tell the truth. (Unpacking how to bravely communicate truth and be proud of who we are)
5) ‘No Way Through’ isn’t True! - I can do it. (Knowing there is a way through every situation, no matter how impossible it may seem)
This curriculum is supplemented by the Growing Up, Growing Wise programme which is used in years 5 and 6 to teach pupils about puberty, relationships, conception and birth.
In EYFS, children are encouraged to talk about the things they love and to explore how facial expressions show how people feel. Children will develop an understanding of how they are loved, special and important. They will learn that all families are different and explore the roles within the school and community. Children will explore being a good friend and begin to understand that they should be kind, even when others are unkind. Children will think about the importance of being themselves and understand the importance of telling the truth. They will know to keep trying when learning something new.
In KS1, children are beginning to consider how they can use their power in positive and negative ways and to understand different emotions. Children will identify special people and how they show us love. They will recognise and celebrate their strengths and ways in which they are unique. Children will consider how to help others and how others have helped them. They will explore how they are the same and different as others. They will think about the motive behind their behaviour, how their behaviour affects others and how they can make amends. Children will learn about the importance of saying sorry and offering forgiveness between friends. Children will understand that it is best to be their true self, without hiding their true thoughts and feelings and think about the impact telling lies can have. They will explore adapting strategies when stuck and understand when they feel stuck, to choose perseverance when completing a challenge.
In lower KS2, children will recall memories that are associated to their emotions and begin to consider the consequences of their words towards themselves and others. Children are encouraged to accept encouragement and celebrate their own strengths and achievements. Children will consider how to be unselfish and to honour others for their kindness. They will think about and thank the unseen heroes in the local community. Children will learn about how trust can be built and betrayed. They will talk about different types of stress and ways to manage negative stress. They will discuss how to bounce back after mistakes. Children will explain why they shouldn’t lie about themselves and give examples of when they have been afraid to tell the truth. They will identify habits needed to develop or lose in order to achieve their goals.
In upper KS2, children are developing their understanding of power and leadership. They will explore self-worth and are encouraged to accept positive words spoken about them. Children will develop an understanding of the impact that helping others has on themselves and others and practise being a good listener. They will develop strategies to resolve conflict and disputes and explore how tone and body language say more than words. Children will describe vulnerability and identify qualities that build trust for vulnerability. They understand how to replace negative self-talk with positive self -talk and explain how using boundaries means they can have respectful friendships. Children will explore stepping out of their comfort zones and describe the impact of changing thinking from ‘I can’t do it’ to ‘I can’t do it yet’.
We also place importance in teaching children about money management, we start off by allowing the children to explore where people get money from, learn that there is a choice in spending and saving, moving on into KS2, children cconsider and prioritise needs and wants, they begin to develop the skills needed to become a critical consumer, finally in upper key stage two, children learn to recognise that resources can be allocated in different ways and these choices affect others and begin to develop an understanding of enterprise and enterprise skills.
Alongside out Heartsmart curriculum, we teach the children about their health. In EYFS and key stage one, children start by identifying ways to take care of themselves every day; begin to understand the importance of looking after themselves through physical exercise; learn how to look after their teeth and learn how to stay safe in the sun.
In lower key stage two, pupils move on to learn some basic first aid, begin to define what puberty is and describe the key physical changes to our bodies when puberty begins. This is then developed, in upper key stage 2, where pupils
In upper key stage two, the children develop the knowledge and skills to make healthy choices, this includes thinking about peer pressure, alcohol and drug use and vaccinations. The children at Archbishop Courtnenay, begin to think about the changes in their brains as they go through adolescence, describe ways to look after their health and wellbeing as they grow up and learn to be able to explain key facts about their menstrual cycle.
Our online safety curriculum teaches children to consider how we can keep safe online, ensuring the children are aware of the rules for keeping safe online. Our pupils develop an awareness of what they should and should not share online by discussing why it is important to keep personal information private and develop an awareness of how to use mobile phones and tablets responsibly. As children get older, they begin to learn about the benefits and dangers of social media and suggest ways to discern if information online is credible.