Home Page

National Curriculum








Rights Respecting School Award

We are very proud to have achieved UNICEF’s ‘Rights Respecting Schools Level 2 Award’ (RRSA). This is a national award that promotes the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), a convention recognised by all but two countries in the world.  There are a large number of schools across the country working towards this award.


The Rights Respecting Schools programme teaches children about ‘The Rights of the Child’, which were originally laid down by the United Nations.  It encourages children to understand that all over the world children have the same rights. 


At The Gattons children learn that they have a responsibility to respect and uphold their rights and those of other children.  They also learn how wants differ from needs.  Most importantly, they learn that it is their needs that correspond to their rights; not their wants.


As a school we have created a School Charter, which the children have played an integral part in establishing.  This is called ‘Our Rights Respecting Rainbow’ (see overleaf).  It focuses on the rights of the child and the responsibilities associated with those rights.  The rights on our rainbow are taken from some of the articles in the UNCRC. We have chosen a rainbow as our rights respecting symbol so that each right and responsibility can be associated with one colour from the rainbow. 


Every Friday we hold a Celebration Assembly when every class celebrates the rights they have been respecting that week by being awarded a special ‘leaf’ to hang on our ‘Thank you tree’. 


Artsmark - Bringing learning to life through arts and culture

Following an in-depth assessment process in 2018, we are delighted to have achieved the ‘Artsmark Silver Award’. Artsmark is a creative quality standard for schools, accredited by Arts Council England that enables schools to develop, celebrate and strengthen our commitment to arts and cultural education.

Every child in our school is encouraged to enjoy and achieve in the arts through Art and Design, Dance, Drama, Music and Creative Writing within our creative curriculum. Staff and children are given the opportunity to work with professional artists and arts organisations. Through the Arts, pupils gain in confidence and self esteem and learn to work both as team members and independently.



Travel Award
We are all very proud to have received Travel Mark Award Scheme Level 3 in 2012.  This is West Sussex County Council's highest 'Travelwise' standard and is only given to schools that are committed to ongoing excellence in safe and sustainable travel.  The Gattons is the first school in Burgess Hill to receive this award. 





Healthy School Award

We have retained our Healthy School Award, which recognises our work to promote a healthy lifestyle for all children.




Eco-school Award

We are proud to hold a silver level Eco-school Award, which reflects our young children’s works to ensure that we look after our environment.


Fair Active School Award

We have achieved Fair Active School status which demonstrates our commitment to Fair Trade in our school community.



Quality Start Award

We have achieved the silver quality start award which recognises and rewards schools for their commitment to PE, School Sport and Healthy and Active Lifestyles. 


Key Stage 1 – Years 1 and 2 - The National Curriculum 

The Core Subjects:  English


This subject is broken down into three areas and our aims are:


1. Speaking and Listening

To develop the skill of speaking in a clear, fluent and interesting way and to listen with growing attention and concentration.

We place a great deal of importance on the children's ability to listen and to express themselves.  Opportunities are provided for our children to learn new vocabulary through a Word Aware Approach and through talking about first hand experiences and planned activities.  Talk is developed through conversation, discussion, stories and poetry, drama, music activities, and an awareness of  sounds in our environment.  Situations are also created where we can extend the children's speaking and listening skills.  We expect children's listening to be active, where they are thinking and responding to what is being discussed.    

2. Reading

To develop the ability to read with fluency, accuracy, understanding and enjoyment using a range of both fiction and non-fiction material.

 Each class contains a range of fiction and non-fiction books. The reading books are colour-coded and are at the children's phonic levels.

We aim for all our pupils to become confident, enthusiastic readers who are able to understand and respond to all kinds of writing and be able to use books to obtain information.


Our teaching of reading includes a wide range of teaching strategies.  Children are supported individually as well as in focused groups. We work on the development of the whole reader, building up strategies for understanding, decoding, responding to and analysing a wide range of texts, as well as teaching a structured programme of phonics throughout the school. The school has well resourced libraries.


3.         Writing, including handwriting and spelling

To develop the ability to write with confidence, fluency, accuracy and independence and to
gradually acquire the skills of well presented handwriting, punctuation, correct spelling and
clarity of expression.

We encourage all our children to enjoy their writing, from early attempts to where they are writing independently for a variety of purposes and for a variety of audiences.  We provide activities to motivate our children to express their feelings and imagination, ideas and opinions, and to help them to realise how writing is used in the "real" world in a variety of forms and situations.

The children are taught cursive handwriting from the beginning of Year 1 and it is used consistently throughout Key Stage 1. 

In addition to using phonic skills acquired through reading to help with spelling, we teach children ways to remember harder to read and spell words.  We teach spelling as the children are developing independence within their writing.


How you can help at home

Teachers change children’s phonic readers on a Friday and these should be returned on the following Friday. Teachers assign phonic readers on the Oxford Owl Website to consolidate phonic learning for the week. Our home school reading agreement says that children will read a minimum of 4 times a week.  This is recorded in a Reading Diary in which parents, carers,
children and teachers can comment.  In Years One and Two teachers provide a learning sticker to show the specific reading strategies children have been learning in class. Parents are encouraged to attend a meeting about Learning to Read in the Autumn Term of the Reception Year.




 The teaching and learning of mathematics at The Gattons sets its foundations in the belief that Mathematics should be rewarding and enjoyable. It is the intention, therefore, that through the organisation of classroom activities which are varied and stimulating the work should bring satisfaction and success for all children taking them to the limits of their mathematical abilities.  We aim to develop pupils’ mathematical fluency and give them confidence in their mathematical ability.



The teaching of mathematics is based on the National Curriculum Programmes of Study for Mathematics, in conjunction with further school resources including White Rose, Numicon, a mathematics system with a multi-sensory approach to arithmetic teaching for the Early Years Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1.
The national curriculum for mathematics aims to ensure that all pupils:


  • become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
  • reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language
  • can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.


The children are given many opportunities for practical work because it is through doing this that the most effective learning takes place. In the early stages of teaching mathematics there is little recorded work. As the children move through the school they learn to record their work neatly and logically and to make mental calculations speedily and accurately.
Broadly, children learn to handle numbers with confidence using mental and written methods; they begin to use and appreciate the power of pattern and order to help develop their mathematical progress; they acquire mathematical skills to solve real-life problems; they learn to investigate and communicate effectively using the language of mathematics and finally the children develop a confidence in their own mathematical abilities.
The children are given many opportunities for practical work because it is through doing this that the most effective learning takes place. In mathematics four different areas are taught:


  • Using and applying mathematics
  • Number
  • Measurement
  • Geometry


Using & Applying Mathematics
Using and applying mathematics is incorporated into all areas of the mathematics curriculum and not taught separately. The children are taught to ask questions, predict, explain and justify their ideas and to discuss their work using appropriate mathematical language. The children are taught to record their work in an organised way and to check their work.


Number - number and place value

The children are taught to:

  • count in steps of 2, 3, and 5 from 0, and in 10s from any number, forward and backward
  • recognise the place value of each digit in a two-digit number (10s, 1s)
  • identify, represent and estimate numbers using different representations, including the number line
  • compare and order numbers from 0 up to 100; use <, > and = signs
  • read and write numbers to at least 100 in numerals and in words
  • use place value and number facts to solve problems

Number – Addition and Subtraction
The children are taught to:

  • solve problems with addition and subtraction:
    • using concrete objects and pictorial representations, including those involving numbers, quantities and measures
    • applying their increasing knowledge of mental and written methods
  • recall and use addition and subtraction facts to 20 fluently, and derive and use related facts up to 100
  • add and subtract numbers using concrete objects, pictorial representations, and mentally, including:
    • a two-digit number and 1s
    • a two-digit number and 10s
    • 2 two-digit numbers
    • adding 3 one-digit numbers
  • show that addition of 2 numbers can be done in any order (commutative) and subtraction of 1 number from another cannot
  • recognise and use the inverse relationship between addition and subtraction and use this to check calculations and solve missing number problems.

Number – multiplication and division
The children are taught to:

  • recall and use multiplication and division facts for the 2, 5 and 10 multiplication tables, including recognising odd and even numbers
  • calculate mathematical statements for multiplication and division within the multiplication tables and write them using the multiplication (×), division (÷) and equals (=) signs
  • show that multiplication of 2 numbers can be done in any order (commutative) and division of 1 number by another cannot
  • solve problems involving multiplication and division, using materials, arrays, repeated addition, mental methods, and multiplication and division facts, including problems in contexts


Number – fractions
The children are taught to:

  • recognise, find, name and write fractions  ,  ,  and  of a length, shape, set of objects or quantity
  • write simple fractions, for example  of 6 = 3 and recognise the equivalence of and 



The children are taught to:

  • choose and use appropriate standard units to estimate and measure length/height in any direction (m/cm); mass (kg/g); temperature (°C); capacity (litres/ml) to the nearest appropriate unit, using rulers, scales, thermometers and measuring vessels
  • compare and order lengths, mass, volume/capacity and record the results using >, < and =
  • recognise and use symbols for pounds (£) and pence (p); combine amounts to make a particular value
  • find different combinations of coins that equal the same amounts of money
  • solve simple problems in a practical context involving addition and subtraction of money of the same unit, including giving change
  • compare and sequence intervals of time
  • tell and write the time to five minutes, including quarter past/to the hour and draw the hands on a clock face to show these times
  • know the number of minutes in an hour and the number of hours in a day


Geometry – properties of shapes
The children are taught to:

  • identify and describe the properties of 2-D shapes, including the number of sides, and line symmetry in a vertical line
  • identify and describe the properties of 3-D shapes, including the number of edges, vertices and faces
  • identify 2-D shapes on the surface of 3-D shapes, [for example, a circle on a cylinder and a triangle on a pyramid]
  • compare and sort common 2-D and 3-D shapes and everyday objects

Geometry – position and direction
The children are taught to:

  • order and arrange combinations of mathematical objects in patterns and sequences
  • use mathematical vocabulary to describe position, direction and movement, including movement in a straight line and distinguishing between rotation as a turn and in terms of right angles for quarter, half and three-quarter turns (clockwise and anti-clockwise)   



  • interpret and construct simple pictograms, tally charts, block diagrams and tables
  • ask and answer simple questions by counting the number of objects in each category and sorting the categories by quantity
  • ask-and-answer questions about totalling and comparing categorical data



Science at The Gattons is taught through the Learning Journeys and is designed to help children understand the world around them.  Through first hand investigations, they encounter new things and new ideas.  They learn different ways to solve problems.  Through focused questioning they are encouraged to bring their previous experience to bear on new situations.


We aim to develop the children’s curiosity and concern for the natural world.  We make good use of our own grounds, our local area and places further afield such as Plumpton Agricultural College and local Nature Reserves.


 They acquire a range of intellectual and practical skills, through planning and carrying out investigations, and interpreting results.

In particular we aim to help the children develop the following attributes:
· enquiring minds
· strong observation skills
· respect for their environment
· the confidence to carry out simple investigations systematically
· the ability to record, interpret and communicate their findings through speech, drawings, writing, graphs and charts
· the ability to use reference material including the Internet (through a West Sussex filter).
The Gattons approach to Science is based upon the Programmes of Study set out in the National Curriculum
The national curriculum for science aims to ensure that all pupils:


develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics
develop understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science through different types of science enquiries that help them to answer scientific questions about the world around them
are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future.


During Year 2, the children will:


  • Work Scientifically
  • Investigate living things and their habitats
  • Investigate plants & animals, including humans
  • Investigate the uses of everyday materials


Art and Design

Work in Art is planned to engage, inspire and challenge pupils, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to experiment, invent and create their own works of art, craft and design, using a wide range of media and tools.  We will develop the children’s ability to express their ideas and feelings and their ability to represent what they directly observe.

Art experiences will involve drawing, painting, printmaking, work with textiles and thread and sculpture.
Children will be introduced to the work of artists, craftspeople, and designers and they are encouraged to discuss, and offer opinions on the work they view. At times, specific techniques and styles will form a focus for the children’s own work.




The children are taught about algorithms and how to create and debug programmes.   They are taught the early skills of computing for activities such as communication, writing, collecting data and problem solving. They are taught to communicate their ideas in different forms using photographs, text, tables, pictures and sound. The children are taught about how to use technology safely and respectfully.  Technology is used widely throughout the school day. The hardware and software used enhance the curriculum which is taught to our children.

Each class has at least two computers and every class has internet access. There is also a set of laptops and iPads for use across the school. Interactive whiteboards have been installed in all classes. They are used for whole class teaching and group or individual work.


The children are encouraged to use other equipment such as digital cameras, Beebots and video cameras across the curriculum, to ensure they become digitally literate.





Work in History is embedded in our Learning Journeys and provides an opportunity for the children to begin to develop the skills necessary to understand and interpret the past.  Children develop an awareness of the past, using common words and phrases relating to the passing of time. They know where the people and events they study fit within a chronological framework and identify similarities and differences between ways of life in different periods. They use a wide vocabulary of everyday historical terms. They ask and answer questions, choosing and using parts of stories and other sources to show that they know and understand key features of events. They understand some of the ways in which we find out about the past and identify different ways in which it is represented.


The children learn about:


  • changes within living memory – where appropriate, these should be used to reveal aspects of change in national life
  • events beyond living memory that are significant nationally or globally e.g. the Great Fire of London, the first aeroplane flight or events commemorated through festivals or anniversaries.
  • the lives of significant individuals in the past who have contributed to national and international achievements, some are used to compare aspects of life in different periods e.g, Elizabeth I and Queen Victoria, Christopher Columbus and Neil Armstrong, William Caxton and Tim Berners-Lee, Pieter Bruegel the Elder and LS Lowry, Rosa Parks and Emily Davison, Mary Seacole and/or Florence Nightingale and Edith Cavell.
  • significant historical events, people and places in their own locality


Learning experiences may involve activities such as handling artefacts, listening to people talking about their memories, using stories, photographs, non-fiction books and audio visual resources. These include videos, DVDs and research on the internet as well as discovering more about our local history.




Work in Geography is within our Learning Journeys and is based on direct experiences, practical activities and fieldwork in the school and its immediate surroundings. Children develop knowledge about the world, the United Kingdom and their locality. They understand basic subject-specific vocabulary relating to human and physical geography and begin to use geographical skills, including first-hand observation, to enhance their locational awareness.


The children learn:


Locational knowledge

  • name and locate the world’s 7 continents and 5 oceans
  • name, locate and identify characteristics of the 4 countries and capital cities of the United Kingdom and its surrounding seas


Place knowledge

  • understand geographical similarities and differences through studying the human and physical geography of a small area of the United Kingdom, and of a small area in a contrasting non-European country


Human and physical geography

  • identify seasonal and daily weather patterns in the United Kingdom and the location of hot and cold areas of the world in relation to the Equator and the North and South Poles
  • use basic geographical vocabulary to refer to:
    • key physical features, including: beach, cliff, coast, forest, hill, mountain, sea, ocean, river, soil, valley, vegetation, season and weather
    • key human features, including: city, town, village, factory, farm, house, office, port, harbour and shop


Geographical skills and fieldwork

  • use world maps, atlases and globes to identify the United Kingdom and its countries, as well as the countries, continents and oceans studied at this key stage
  • use simple compass directions (north, south, east and west) and locational and directional language e.g, near and far, left and right, to describe the location of features and routes on a map
  • use aerial photographs and plan perspectives to recognise landmarks and basic human and physical features; devise a simple map; and use and construct basic symbols in a key
  • use simple fieldwork and observational skills to study the geography of their school and its grounds and the key human and physical features of its surrounding environment


Resources such as plans, maps, aerial photographs, atlases, compasses and globes are used to support their work both locally and when they study a contrasting locality. Geography is often a focus for off-site activities, including areas in our immediate locality.


Religious Education


Our Religious Education curriculum is based on the West Sussex Agreed Syllabus and the activities are designed to give children knowledge and understanding about Christianity and other principal religions.  It forms a basis for their spiritual, moral and cultural education, enabling them to develop positive values and attitudes in their relationships in everyday life.  An act of collective worship is held each day, these are mainly of a Christian character and are based on such themes as ‘feelings’ or ‘celebrations’.


Parents have the right to withdraw their children from Religious Education lessons and assemblies and should inform the Headteacher if this is their wish so alternative arrangements can be made.



Physical Education


Physical education lessons take place twice a week both in the hall and outside either on the playgrounds or the field when the weather is fine. Through P.E. lessons, the children develop fundamental movement skills, become increasingly competent and confident and access a broad range of opportunities to extend their agility, balance and coordination, individually and with others. They also engage in competitive (both against self and against others) and co-operative physical activities, in a range of increasingly challenging situations.


The children will:


  • master basic movements including running, jumping, throwing and catching, as well as developing balance, agility and co-ordination, and begin to apply these in a range of activities
  • participate in team games, developing simple tactics for attacking and defending
  • perform dances using simple movement patterns


They take part in gymnastics, games and dance lessons throughout the year and in the summer athletic activities are included. We have sports days in the summer with the focus on participation and enjoyment as well as having a competitive element for all year groups. We are very well equipped with our equipment being replaced and updated regularly.


The focus of  P.E. is on enjoyment and participation and fostering a lifelong love of physical activity, so that the children lead healthy, active lives.







Music education aims to develop pupils’ understanding, knowledge, skills and enjoyment of music through involvement in composing, performing and listening.


The children will:


  • use their voices expressively and creatively by singing songs and speaking chants and rhymes
  • play tuned and untuned instruments musically
  • listen with concentration and understanding to a range of high-quality live and recorded music
  • experiment with, create, select and combine sounds using the interrelated dimensions of music


Singing has a high profile in our school and is also offered as an extra-curricular activity.


Design Technology

Through a variety of creative and practical activities, the children are taught the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage in an iterative process of designing and making. They work in a range of relevant contexts e.g. the home and school, gardens and playgrounds, the local community, industry and the wider environment. 


When designing and making, they are taught to:



  • design purposeful, functional, appealing products for themselves and other users based on design criteria
  • generate, develop, model and communicate their ideas through talking, drawing, templates, mock-ups and, where appropriate, information and communication technology


  • select from and use a range of tools and equipment to perform practical tasks e.g. cutting, shaping, joining and finishing
  • select from and use a wide range of materials and components, including construction materials, textiles and ingredients, according to their characteristics


  • explore and evaluate a range of existing products
  • evaluate their ideas and products against design criteria



Technical knowledge

  • build structures, exploring how they can be made stronger, stiffer and more stable
  • explore and use mechanisms e.g. levers, sliders, wheels and axles, in their products


By doing this the children develop an understanding of the properties of both natural and man-made materials.  They develop the craft skills needed to achieve their aims.  They are taught to test and evaluate their work, and to compare their finished products to their design plans.  The children will also be taught to use the basic principles of a healthy and varied diet to prepare dishes and understand where food comes from.




Modern Languages


The school is not required to teach a foreign language at KS1.  However, the children do learn informally about other languages as part of their curriculum.


Personal, Social, Health & Economic


PSHE is concerned with self and relationships with other people, as well as with the community in which we live.

In PSHE we aim to develop children's confidence and social skills, and a sense of respect for others.  We teach the children about their rights and responsibilities as a Rights Respecting School, as well as the rights and responsibilities they have in the wider world.

Health education addresses areas such as medicines and drugs education, growth, and the need for exercise, rest and a balanced diet.
The children learn about Citizenship through taking responsibility for tasks in class and in school and their involvement with our Class and School Councils. Each class elects a representative who meet with a teacher regularly and discuss a variety of topics that are of concern to the children. Recent subjects include recycling and waste, behaviour while eating lunch, and playtime games and toys.
To develop the children’s sense of economic awareness we encourage each class to take part in a mini-enterprise scheme. A small investment is made and the children act as entrepreneurs! Past schemes have included a plant sale, a café, and art sales.


Relationships & Sex Education


Young children are interested in themselves, their bodies and their relationships. Activities in Science cover the beginnings of life through work on babies and growth. Other aspects are covered through personal and social education and include work on families, feelings, friendships, keeping safe and caring for themselves.


Children may ask direct questions and we respond by answering at the right level of understanding, consulting with the parents if necessary. Our Sex and Relationships Education policy is available for any parent who wishes to read it.


Extra-Curricular Activities and Extended Schools Provision


There are opportunities for children to take part in a range of extra-curricular activities during their time at The Gattons; these change from year to year. At the moment we are able to offer cookery, ukulele, singing, drama, dance and sports skills.  Some of these are organised by external providers, some of the courses are free and parents pay for others.


The school works with other schools in Burgess Hill to evaluate provision for holiday clubs, day care and adult education within the town.  We have a before-school and after-school care club, which is held at Southway Junior School with a 'Walking Bus' which brings and collects children from The Gattons.  For further information please see 



Please see our Local offer under Special Needs Provision.


More able Pupils


Through regular monitoring and evaluation of pupils’ work, children who are found to be very able have their work matched to their needs and are offered an accelerated pace of learning. Application may also be made to the Children and Young People’s Services Enrichment Programme for Able Pupils, which provides extra-curricular activities.


Equal Opportunities

Our school aims to promote equal opportunities and ensure that all pupils, regardless of their background, ability, gender or ethnicity receive a balanced and broad curriculum which fosters individual achievement.


If you would like further information on the National Curriculum please go to: