Our curriculum and pedagogical approach are deeply influenced by Fiorella and Mayer’s (2014) definition of learning, which they describe as a cognitive process focused on making sense of information. In this process, individuals actively engage by selecting pertinent pieces of information, organising them coherently, and then integrating this newfound knowledge with their existing understanding.
At IPAT, we are committed to providing each pupil with an entitlement to an enriching and aspirational curriculum that not only inspires but also acts as a catalyst for social mobility. Our dedication to this principle transcends all socio-economic backgrounds. To achieve this mission, we have joined forces with Unity Schools Partnership (USP), collaborating to deliver the Curriculum of Unity Schools Partnership (CUSP). This partnership ensures that every student, regardless of their background, benefits from the transformative power of education.
Our partnership with USP provides the resources of a wide range of curriculum experts to ensure that our curriculum design is robust, coherent, well sequenced. Each decision regarding our curriculum is grounded in evidence-informed practices, enhancing the retention of knowledge for pupils and improving the effectiveness of teaching. This approach to curriculum development empowers teachers to focus on the craft of teaching, utilising their expertise and creative talents to effectively deliver learning to their unique cohorts.
Schools within the Trust adhere to a common pedagogical approach grounded in three key facets of cognitive science:
This encompasses comprehension of schemata and Cognitive Load Theory (CLT), encompassing strategies aimed at aiding students in embedding knowledge into their long-term memory effectively.
These entail methods designed to enhance the efficiency of teaching. This includes techniques such as revisiting previously learned material, employing direct instruction, and employing adept modeling and practice exercises.
This emphasises the development of impactful instructional techniques and task designs, ensuring that students engage in rigorous thinking and can actively assimilate new information into their existing knowledge framework.
The sequence of learning in each curriculum area is meticulously planned to establish a strong foundational base of knowledge upon which subsequent learning can progressively develop in complexity. Depending on class structure, schools will follow either the single age sequence (link to single age curriculum outline) or the mixed age sequence (link to mixed age curriculum outline).
An integral element within the IPAT curriculum involves the intentional and explicit instruction of vocabulary. We regard this as a moral imperative and a means to enhance social mobility. Within the learning modules, Tier 2 and Tier 3 vocabulary is pinpointed to guarantee that students cultivate refined language skills and can employ it with growing precision and accuracy.
The Trust literature curriculum (adopted from CUSP) is expansive, diverse, and agile. Its central aim is to introduce students to a wide array of top-tier literary works, providing each child with a reflection of themselves and a glimpse into a world outside their own. This commitment is also evident in the supplementary texts, and the thematic mapping serves to highlight instances where particular moral, social, and ethical issues are either referenced or explored.
Most schools within the Trust adopt this shared curriculum approach, fostering enhanced collaboration and valuable inter-school support. With extensive experience in implementing a high-quality Trust-wide curriculum, seasoned curriculum leaders can assist schools in adopting the CUSP curriculum to accelerate student progress and further raise aspirations.