We introduced the Cornerstones curriculum in September 2014. This is a creative approach to learning built on the criteria for an outstanding curriculum. It ensures that your children learn in the most creative way and are involved in what they are learning. Cornerstones is based on four cornerstones of learning: engage, develop, innovate and express. These cornerstones provide a consistent philosophy for learning throughout school.


The Four Cornerstones philosophy

The most important underlying principle of a curriculum is to help children learn. We believe that a successful curriculum is brought to life by high quality teaching, inspirational learning activities and opportunities to listen and plan for the developing interests and motivations of children.

That is why the Cornerstones Primary Curriculum is built upon a four stage teaching and learning philosophy…


During the Engage stage children will:

  • Have memorable first-hand experiences – for example going on a visit outside the classroom or inviting a specialist visitor into the classroom.
  • Have WOW experiences – Investigate and Discover
  • Be introduced in exciting ways to the new topic or theme
  • Begin initial research and set enquiry questions
  • Have lots of opportunity to make observations
  • Develop spoken language skills
  • Take part in sensory activities
  • have lots of opportunity to make observations
  • Have a great deal of fun, allowing them to fully ‘engage’ with their new topic


During the Develop stage children will:

  • Dig much deeper to develop their skills, knowledge and understanding of a topic across the curriculum.
  • Practice their newfound skills
  • Compose, make, do, build, investigate, explore, write for different purposes, read across the curriculum
  • Research their own questions and those posed by others
  • Follow new pathways of enquiry based on their own interests
  • Complete homework activities that support their learning in school



During the Innovate stage children will:

  • Apply previous skills, knowledge and understanding in real life contexts
  • Be challenged with real or imagined problems and situations to solve using knowledge and skills from the earlier stages.
  • Be inspired with imaginative and creative opportunities
  • Have time to re-visit skills, knowledge and understanding not grasped during the develop stage.
  • Have the opportunity to take on different roles



During the Express stage children will:

  • Become the performers, the experts, the informers
  • Share their achievements with others in many different ways…….parents, class mates and the community
  • Evaluate finished products/processes
  • Tie learning back to the beginning
  • Celebrate
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