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The School Curriculum.


It is the policy of the Board of Governors of St. John’s that all pupils will receive their full entitlement under the Northern Ireland Curriculum and the school will go beyond that entitlement in areas where there are particular abilities or skills among the staff.


We aim to empower young people to develop their potential and to make informed and responsible choices and decisions throughout their lives.



The learning opportunity provided through the Northern Ireland Curriculum should help young people to develop as:

  • Individuals
  • Contributors to society
  • Contributors to economy and environment

Areas of Learning



Communication is central to the whole curriculum. The modes of communication include talking and listening, reading and writing. However, effective communication also includes non-verbal modes of communication, wider literacy and the use of multimedia and ICT technologies which may combine different modes.


Using Mathematics


Using Mathematics’ is the skill of applying mathematical concepts, processes and  understanding appropriately in a variety of contexts. Ideally these should be in relevant real life situations that require a mathematical dimension.


Information and Cummnuniactions Technology


Pupils will develop the skills of Using ICT (Information and Communications Technology) by engaging in meaningful research and purposeful activities set in relevant contexts. They will use ICT to handle and communicate information, solve problems, pose questions and take risks. They will process, present and exchange their ideas and translate their thinking into creative outcomes that show an awareness of audience and purpose.


The Arts

Art and Design, Music and Drama;


The World Around Us

Geography, History and Science and Technology;


Personal Development and Mutual Understanding

Personal Understanding and Health and Mutual Understanding in the Local and Wider Community;


Physical Development and Movement

Athletics, Dance, Games and Gymnastics.


At the heart of the curriculum lies an explicit emphasis on the development of skills and capabilities for lifelong learning and for operating effectively in society, through opportunities to engage in active learning contexts across all areas of the curriculum.


Cross-Curricular Skills

  • Communication
  • Using Mathematics
  • Using Information and Communications Technology


Thinking Skills and Personal Capabilities

  • Thinking, Problem-solving and Decision-making
  • Self Management
  • Working with others
  • Managing information

Children learn best when learning is interactive, practical and enjoyable. Teachers will make use of a wide range of teaching methods, balancing whole class, group and individual activities, to engage children in effective learning. In the Foundation Stage children should experience much of their learning through well planned and challenging play. Self-initiated play helps children to understand and learn about themselves and their surroundings. Motivation can be increased when children have opportunities to make choices and decisions about their learning, particularly when their own ideas and interests are used, either as starting points for learning activities or for pursuing a topic in more depth.


It is important that children:

• have secure relationships with peers and adults in a positively affirming environment which supports their emotional development and which is sensitive to their growing self-esteem and self-confidence;


• have opportunities to be actively involved in practical, challenging play-based learning in a stimulating environment, which takes account of their developmental stage/needs (including those with learning difficulties and the most able children) and their own interests/experiences;


• have opportunities to initiate play which capitalises on intrinsic motivation and natural curiosity;


• have choice and exercise autonomy and independence in their learning, and where they are supported in taking risks in their efforts to succeed;


• are given equality of opportunity to learn in a variety of ways and in different social groupings;


• are actively involved in planning, carrying out and reflecting on their work;


• are supported by trained, enthusiastic and committed professionals who work in partnership with parents and carers and where appropriate, professionals in other fields, to ensure that all achieve their full potential.