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Curriculum: Overview

North Lakes School was proud to be selected as a Creative Partnerships Change School from 2009 to 2011. A winner of the CN Group Golden Apple Awards for Innovation in the Arts in 2011, North Lakes School was shortlisted for Primary School of the Year in 2016 and is the winner of Best Use of Technology in 2017.  North Lakes achieved Arts Mark Gold in 2013. Creativity is at the heart of the curriculum, with many opportunities for children to work with artists, express and develop their ideas.


North Lakes School follows the new National Curriculum, while placing emphasis on the children’s creativity, achievement and enjoyment. In a curriculum revised in 2014 in consultation with parents, staff, Governors and Brunswick School, we aim to develop key skills for learning and life. High standards are sought through a rich, varied and exciting curriculum, with emphasis on a number of key “curriculum drivers”, agreed to be priorities for children in modern Penrith.


These drivers are:

  • Enquiry
  • Learning to Learn
  • Personal, Social and Emotional Wellbeing;
  • Knowledge of the World and Global Learning


‘The curriculum caters well for pupils’ needs and makes a strong contribution to their good spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.’  – Ofsted 2013


Children’s independence, self esteem and self-evaluation are actively promoted, Through the process of Building Learning Power, five key attributes are taught and nurtured:

  • Resourcefulness (creating new ideas and linking other ideas)
  • Reflectiveness (self evaluating and looking to improve)
  • Risk Taking (trying something new and different)
  • Resilience (stickability, not giving up)
  • Relationships (team work, leadership and social skills)


An overview of the children’s learning is provided for parents at the start of each term.


Children are provided with a broad and rich curriculum that supports and challenges all learners, matching learning to the stages of development of individual children. Although subjects may at times be taught separately, the children’s learning is often made more meaningful by applying knowledge and skills across different subjects. Teachers plan this through themes which may embrace a number of curriculum areas.


Philosophy for Children (P4C) is taught to underpin an enquiry based approach to learning, and North Lakes achieved the SAPERE Gold Award Accreditation in 2016 – one of only nine in England.  Different teaching and learning styles are used according to the needs of the learners and the lesson. Class, group, paired, and individual teaching are used as and where appropriate.


Updated Oct 2018