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.
  • Information Technology: which focuses on the use of computers for collecting and presenting information in a variety of ways and using search technology.
  • Digital Literacy: which ensures children can use technology, express themselves and develop their ideas through information and communication technology.

Examples of this work can be seen by clicking the images below.

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 where along with other activities, children 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 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 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 grassed areas, an all-weather pitch, as well as a hard playing court.

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 during the academic 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 / Relationships & Sex Education

We are committed to the education of the whole child through a broad and balanced curriculum. This includes the teaching of RSE (Relationships and Sex Education) and PSHE (Personal, Social and Health Education) at a level which is appropriate to the age and stage of development of our children.

We aim to:

  • Help them develop confidence and responsibility in themselves, and to help them to make the most of their abilities.
  • Help them prepare to play an active role as good citizens.
  • Help them to develop a safe & healthy lifestyle.
  • Help them to develop happy relationships and to be aware of and respect the differences between people.

Much 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. 

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; equipping all children with the clear and scientific information they need to maintain successful and happy relationships and healthy minds and bodies. 

For more information about how we teach RSE at St Joseph's School, please click here.