St Ursula’s Curriculum Intention
St Ursula’s is an established Ursuline school proud of its strong academic successes, where each student is unique, respected and loved. At the heart of our curriculum is a passion to ensure each student gains a lifelong love of learning developed within a caring Catholic community; allowing everyone to grow and share in the love of Christ; serving the world of today and tomorrow through the relationships made and service to others.
‘Curriculum’ derives from the Latin verb ‘currere’ meaning to ‘run’ or ‘proceed’. The word is filled with a sense of progress and journey. We intend for our curriculum to take our students on a journey from novice to expert. To achieve this we provide a fascinating and ambitious curriculum, delivering powerful transformative knowledge, which affords each of our students the advantage to ‘acquire knowledge that takes them beyond their own experiences’ (Young et al., 2014, p. 7) and allows them to develop their God-given talents.
“Learning is defined as an alteration in long-term memory.”(Sweller et al. 2014) so with careful consideration of Cognitive Load Theory, our curriculum will embed low stakes retrieval practice, revisit and extend work with suitable spacing and interleave content between and within subjects. The rich contexts, stories and vocabulary that surround the core of each subject are explored to develop each of our student’s unique connections to the world we live in so they are willing, in the spirit of SERVIAM, to develop their talents and use them respectfully, for the good of all others, making a positive contribution to their community, wider society and the future of our planet.
Our students will learn how knowledge is gained and understand that declarative knowledge can be abstracted depending on the domain of each subject enabling them to theorise possibility, giving them power to create and rethink and the skills and confidence to speak up through debate. By sharing metacognitive strategies from the start of the learning journey, all students can maximise their long-term memory becoming independent, resilient learners with a healthy and positive mindset capable of excelling both their terminal exams and in life beyond school.