At Albyn School, the Curriculum for Lower School has at its core our goal for every pupil to develop a love of learning and grow the skills, knowledge and understanding they need to be confident learners, ready to progress to the next level of education. Teachers work closely together to ensure a similar learning experience throughout Lower School and small class sizes mean that teachers can gain an in depth understanding of all pupils in their class.
There are three different components to our Lower School curriculum which allow our pupils to develop a strong foundation in the key areas of Literacy and Numeracy while providing the opportunity to grow their investigative skills and understanding of the world around them as well as exploring subjects that are of interest to them. Additional visits by specialist teachers in Art, Drama, French, Music and PE enhance the learning provided by Lower School classroom teachers.
Curriculum for Excellence
Education Scotland’s Curriculum for Excellence provides a progressive curriculum and is the standard for primary schools in Scotland. Our core curriculum is informed by aspects of the Curriculum for Excellence, especially in Literacy and Numeracy.
International Primary Curriculum
The IPC is a comprehensive, thematic, creative curriculum with a clear process of learning and specific learning goals for every subject. It also develops international mindedness and encourages personal growth.
Every year group works on diverse, carefully selected units throughout the school year. Each unit begins with an exciting Entry Point and ends with an Exit Point to showcase a child’s learning journey. The units of learning establish the foundations of the essential skills, knowledge and understanding pupils will require as they progress through school.
Albyn Curriculum Enrichment (ACE)
We want our pupils to have a healthy balance between a love for learning and curiosity beyond the classroom. With that in mind, we introduced the Albyn Curriculum Enrichment Programme.
Pupils have a choice of which activities they would like to take part in; these are built into the school day on Monday and Friday afternoons and are in addition to co-curricular activities at break and lunchtimes. These additional classes differ vastly from day-to-day learning and provide a richer educational experience which will have a cumulative impact over the Albyn Lower School years. This head, heart and hand approach to learning involves activities such as:
• Extension of Academics: Logical thinking, problem solving, poetry and prose, computer coding, science/technology (These academic activities build on everyday learning.)
• Active Living: Sport and health/fitness related activities such as golf, badminton and netball
• Skills for Life: Cooking, gardening, bikeability
• Community: Local history, RotaKids
• Arts: Crafts and musical theatre
In P5 we introduce 1:1 devices for all pupils. From P5 to S2, pupils are taught a common, core curriculum in whole class groupings and at this earlier stage of cognitive development, we require pupils to have their own iPad. This device supports educational aims including collaboration, independent learning and research, creativity, problem solving, critical thinking and communication.
It is important for the teacher to manage only one single device in their classroom and iPads are portable, robust and better suited to the nature of the curriculum and activities during these years where there is generally much less extended writing.
Once subject choices have been made from S3 onwards, and the curriculum has narrowed down and pupils have become more capable of managing their own device, and where there is generally more extended writing, a device-agnostic approach is taken and pupils can select to use any tablet or laptop from S3 to S6.