The Foundation Subjects

There are eight foundation subjects;  Design Technology, Computing, History, Geography, P.E., Art and Design and Music. We also teach French as our Modern Foreign Language in KS2. Spanish Lessons are offered to all as an after school club. Our approach to these subjects is outlined below. You will also find information below on Personal And Social Education.


Design Technology

Design Technology is met within a cross-curricular approach in which we aim to develop the children’s skills as they progress.

Design Technology involves the investigation of a need and the skills of planning, making and evaluating to realise it practically. DT is taught using a wide range of media, e.g. clay, textiles, wood, paper and construction materials.


At St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School, we provide children with high-quality computing education that prepares them for life within a digital world.  We want our children to be creative and develop their thinking towards the technology around them. In order to facilitate this, we use resources from Teach Computing to support our teaching. This allows us to teach the three main basic components of computing to a high standard:

  • Computer Science: which teaches the children about the principles of information and computation, how digital systems work and how to put this knowledge to use through programming.  See example here.
  • Information Technology: which focuses on the use of computers for collecting and presenting information in a variety of ways and using search technology.  See example here.
  • Digital Literacy: which ensures children can use technology, express themselves and develop their ideas through information and communication technology.  See example here.

Children have regular access to a range of resources that enable them to strive in the computing curriculum as well as other subjects.  At school, each year group have access to laptops, iPads and programmable toys.

We celebrate computing during our computing week (this year will be held from 7/2/2022 - 11/2/2022), where along with other activities, children will learn about famous people in computing history, take part in coding activities and update their e-safety knowledge.


History is taught through a topic approach. Each year group focuses on different aspects throughout the year. We aim to develop the children’s historical understanding through the use of artefacts and secondary sources in order to foster research skills and an empathy with the past.

Specialist historical groups visit the school to provide the children with a variety of experiences related to the historical period they are studying. This enables them to become active in their learning through the use of role-play.


Geography is taught through a cross-curricular approach, or as a separate subject where appropriate.

We endeavor to match geography with other related subjects such as Science to ensure a depth of experience without unnecessary duplication.

We cover the Geography National Curriculum through a series of projects looking at both the local environment and the wider world. Children also have the opportunity to develop their studies further afield during residential field trips in Years 4 and 6.

Map work skills are developed throughout the school. Many aspects introduced in Key Stage One are revisited and further developed in Key Stage Two.

Physical Education

P.E is an integral part of the school curriculum. We aim to provide an enjoyable and balanced programme by following the Real PE scheme of work from Create Development. Alongside this children will also develop their skills and understanding of competitive team games (e.g. Netball and Cricket) as well as Outdoor and Adventurous Activities, Dance and Gymnastics. Within PE lessons children are provided with the opportunity to develop their ‘Multi-Abilities’ which are, cognitive, health and fitness, personal, social, physical and creative skills. Within in the physical ‘Multi-Abilities’ our main focus is improving agility, balance and coordination. The development of confidence, tolerance and the appreciation of one’s own and others’ strengths and weaknesses are an essential part of our teaching. The school is fortunate to have two multi-purpose halls and extensive outdoor facilities including grass areas and an all-weather pitch, as well as hard playing surfaces.
All children in Key Stage One and Year 4 have the opportunity to swim, with weekly sessions at the pool in Donyngs Leisure Centre for a term throughout the year.

Art and Design

At St. Joseph's we value art and design as an important part of the children's entitlement to a broad and balanced curriculum.

Art and design provides the opportunity to develop and extend skills as well as an opportunity to express individual interests, thoughts and ideas through creativity.  We encourage children to observe and appreciate the work of a range of artists from the past and present.

Art and design is taught as part of termly topic work and links to their National Curriculum through a thematic approach based around the Cornerstones Curriculum.


Music is usually taught as a class activity. Our aim is to enable children to enjoy music through the development of listening skills and musical appreciation. Children are encouraged to compose and perform both vocal and instrumental pieces are introduced to a wide variety of styles.

Personal and Social Education

Education in Personal Relationships

Education in Personal Relationships (EPR) is a framework for Personal, Social, Moral, Health and Citizenship Education.

It aims to develop children in the following areas:

  • Developing confidence and responsibility and making the most of their abilities
  • Preparing to play an active role as citizens
  • Developing a healthy, safe lifestyle
  • Developing good relationships and respecting the differences between people


Much of EPR is taught through the Religious Education Programme of ‘Come and See’ and specific links with topics are identified. Further aspects are covered through other areas of the curriculum. The SEAL resource is used to support the learning in those areas related to feelings, emotions and behaviour. Teaching resources provided by CAFOD and Fairtrade are also used.


Relationships and Sex Education

Relationships and Sex Education is taught to all ages throughout the school at an age appropriate level. It includes health education, sex education, moral and social interaction.

We use a resource called ‘A Journey in Love’ created by Sister Jude Groden. It is the recommended programme of study for Catholic schools for Relationship and Sex Education, and has been written as a progressive scheme of work that supports the Religious Education, EPR and Science curricula taught within the school.

As children progress through school, they discover more and more about themselves and the wider world. This thirst for learning new things in all aspects of life is fostered by the school, who attempt to create a safe, stimulating environment for learning; supporting all children in their development. Our mission statement which drives the school, attempts to achieve this goal following the Gospel values of truth and respect, understanding our journey as children of God, both special and unique.

Central to our work within the school is learning about our faith, including understanding ourselves, our position in our community and how we develop as human beings - our spiritual, social, emotional and physical development. This is how ‘A Journey in Love’ fits in to the school’s curriculum. The scheme caters for all levels of learning throughout the school. It focuses on friendship, family, community, relationships and spirituality; a guide to the children’s development as young Catholics.

Further information about this programme, including resources, can be found on our VLE. Parents have the right to withdraw their children from Sex Education should they wish to do so. Please contact the Headteacher in these circumstances. There can be no withdrawal from the Science National Curriculum.