Our Curriculum

The Chris Quigley Essentials Curriculum

We have chosen to follow the Chris Quigley Essentials Curriculum which sets out essential coverage, learning objectives and standards which are required for all subjects. Furthermore, it provides progress measures for all subjects including personal development. 


One of the primary reasons why we have chosen to adopt this curriculum is because it emphasises the importance of developing the depth of children’s learning. In essence, this means providing children with increased cognitive challenge, allowing them to apply the skills which they have learnt independently in a range of contexts rather than moving them onto the next skill needlessly when they have not truly mastered it. Such thinking is encapsulated in the scenario below:



At North Duffield we model and promote an inclusive ethos so our leaners are flexible, imaginative, responsible and confident life long learners, who value “Rights, Respect, Responsibility and Independence.”  Through metacognition we promote each child’s behaviours towards school, developing the skills of learning through resilience, resourcefulness, reflection and reciprocity. 


Our curriculum aims and basic principles (Intent), based on Chris Quigley’s Essential Curriculum, are to ensure that our pupils experience a wide breadth of study and have by the end of each key stage, long term memory of an ambitious body of procedural, the skills (eg handwriting, calculations walking etc..) and semantic knowledge, the meaning of facts and how they relate to each other (eg chronology, events). 


The curriculum breadth is shaped by our curriculum drivers, (diversity, possibilities and spirituality) cultural capital (valuable subject specific knowledge), including subject topics and our ambition for pupils to study the best of what has been taught and said by many generations of academics and scholars. 


Our curriculum distinguishes between subject topics that allows pupils to study specific aspects of each subject and shows progression through threshold concepts.  These threshold concepts are explored in a wide breadth of topics within a subject, using “forward and backwards engineering” of the curriculum, pupils return to the same concepts over and over and gradually build understanding of them. 


Threshold concepts are split into three milestones.  Our progression model uses a different pedagogical style in each of the cognitive domains (Basic, Advance & Deep).  Pupils master the basics through direct instructions in the early stages (Basic Domain) before developing problem solving and discovery in the deeper stage.  The Proof of Progress tasks are part of our curriculum that shows expectations in each domain. 


We are currently updating each subject area to match the intent of our curriculum.