Intention

PSHE/RSE at Hexham Middle School is a subject through which we aim to develop our pupils’ knowledge, skills and attributes that they need to manage their lives, now and in the future. These skills and attributes will include a focus on oracy and the development of confident and articulate speakers.

We expect our pupils to develop secure knowledge of a range of physical, social, health and economic contexts. Our aim is to embed an implicit value for the subject so that this can aid pupils’ understanding of the ever-changing world around them. The knowledge and understanding gained in the subject will help pupils of Hexham Middle School to stay healthy, safe and prepare them for life and work in modern Britain.

Year 5

In year 5, the focus will be on respectful and caring relationships, including friendships and families. We will be focusing on the importance of families for children growing up because they give love, stability and security. Additionally, we will explore the characteristics of healthy family life including exploring why some families are different to their own, promoting respect and understanding of these differences; this will include discussions and pupils’ understanding of LGBT. This will be promoted both in lessons and in assemblies. We will access the services of industry professionals to ensure pupils of all ages access high quality education on essential matters. Further to this we will focus on being safe in the modern world exploring what sort of boundaries are appropriate in friendships with peers and others (including in a digital context).

Year 6

In year 6, the focus will begin with online relationships and examine how behaviours can potentially be different online and in reality. We will also promote and establish the rules and principles of staying safe online, how to recognise risks, harmful content and contact and in turn explore different types of bullying, its impact and the responsibilities of bystanders in this context. Additionally, we will examine caring friendships and how important friendships are in making us feel happy and secure, and how pupils can support and help their peers within and outside of their school lives. We will also examine the characteristics of friendships including mutual respect, truthfulness, trustworthiness, loyalty, kindness, generosity, trust, shared interests and support.

Year 7

Year 7 pupils will begin to delve deeper into essential life topics such as finance, identity, community and emotional wellbeing. The pupils in year 7 will also complete a Cohesion project where the goal is to gain a greater personal understanding about emotions, preferences, life aspirations and personal strengths. The lessons will incorporate the use of presentations to further develop the pupil’s oracy. In year 7 we will also begin to further explore topics such as knife crime, drugs, sexual health and relationships. Prior to starting these topics, an email will be sent to parents/carers to outline our intentions and relevant information including specific content to be covered. If at this point pupils feel uncomfortable discussing these topics we aim to approach these themes in a factual way, employing appropriate, sensitivity. Parents/carers have the right to withdraw (or excuse) children from non-statutory elements of the Relationship, Health and Sex Education (RHSE) curriculum. This relates specifically to sex education in a relationship context. We will access external services such as Northumbria Police, fire and rescue authorities and youth services to help provide pupils with real-life examples relating to topics addressed in our curriculum.

Year 8

In year 8, pupils will all have the opportunity to further explore essential life topics such as finance, relationships, careers, politics and law. The content of lessons challenges pupils to think about what the future may have in store for them as well as how they can go on to become successful in their future lives. Year 8 pupils will discuss lots of challenging topics such as healthy relationships, prejudice, racism and drug misuse. They will access services such as Operation Encompass and Be Safe to hear from industry experts about real-life battles people have faced. We challenge our pupils in PSHE to form their own opinions and present them to the group whether that be in a business or political-style lesson. We also cover sex and relationships in further detail in line with government guidance. As with year 7 we will notify parents about this prior to the event so you have the right to withdraw from sex education content in the context of relationships. Overall, our year 8 curriculum is a body of work aimed at providing pupils with the knowledge and information to help them lead healthy, safe and successful lives.

Implementation

A fundamental approach to learning in PSHE/RSE is based on the skills of questioning and discussion. We believe strongly that pupils should be developing an enquiring and inquisitive mind and given the freedom to discuss and understand all aspects of modern life. Through the application of targeted questioning in lessons, by both teachers and fellow peers, gains in securing knowledge can be maximised.

Pupils are encouraged to be enthusiastic about their learning, engaging in a variety of teaching methods. Collaboration and critical enquiry help underpin strong knowledge in the subject and enable pupils to extend their understanding of the world around them including their lives and the lives of others. In a PSHE/RSE classroom, focused discussion will be evident in every lesson. Therefore, a strong framework for oracy and disciplinary literacy is vital to enable our pupils to talk confidently in this context. This will lead directly to precise and in-depth writing, exploring all aspects of PSHE/RSE strands. We place emphasis on expanding a pupil’s subject-specific vocabulary with the intention that this can be applied in different contexts in their lives.

Throughout the year we also enrich this provision through the use of effective outside speakers and leaders of the community to deliver bespoke sessions on various topics. Further to this, our assembly programme touches upon many aspects that complement the work within the PSHE/RSE classroom.

Impact

To measure the impact of our curriculum, we use ongoing formative assessment in the form of teacher feedback and pupil response. This, coupled with low-stakes quizzes and spot-check quizzes, provide a basis for our understanding of pupils’ knowledge and progress. In addition to this, we will use the development of effective oracy in PSHE/RSE to assess our pupils through the use of speaking and listening activities. These may take the form of group, paired or individual presentations to the class assessed by the teacher. Through these formative assessment strategies we will be able to measure the effectiveness of the curriculum and measure the knowledge that students have retained and are able to recall. Due to the nature of the speaking and listening assessment, this will transcend across and throughout other school subjects and feed into behaviour for learning across other contexts.

Sequence of Learning

Half Term 1

  • Me and My World
  • Recovery Curriculum*

Half Term 3

  • Respectful relationships
  • Families and people who care for me

Half Term 5

Being safe including online

*Key Stage 2 pupils will have additional maths and English lessons for Autumn 2020 following the Coronavirus pandemic.

Half Term 1

  • Dreams and Goals
  • Recovery Curriculum*

Half Term 3

Online relationships

Half Term 5

Caring friendships

*Key Stage 2 pupils will have additional maths and English lessons for Autumn 2020 following the Coronavirus pandemic.

Half Term 1

Identity and Community

Half Term 2

Politics and Law

Half Term 3

Careers and Healthy Lifestyles

Half Term 4

Planning for the Future

Half Term 5

Sex Education

Half Term 6

Relationships

Half Term 1

Finance

Half Term 2

Politics and Law

Half Term 3

Drugs

Half Term 4

Identity and Community

Half Term 5

Sex and Relationships

Half Term 6

Health and Safety in Life