History is taught through topic work. All children are introduced to different types of historical sources, for example stories, research and local historical environment. Children are helped to understand the present in the light of the past and so make sense of the world in which they live.
Children study geography as part of a topic and use the locality as well as areas further a field to gain first-hand experience to increase their knowledge, skills and awareness and so build up data to make informed comparisons. Practical work forms an important part of this learning, and frequent trips within the neighbourhood are made by all classes: Year 5 children, for example have the opportunity to develop their orienteering skills and to study a different locality.
Art is given particular emphasis at St. Luke’s; we consider this school to be a centre of excellence. Creativity and independence are encouraged at all ages. Using a wide variety of materials, children explore different media, including painting, modelling, drawing, sculpture and observational art work. Artists in residence work with the children to develop a greater depth of knowledge. At the end of each Key Stage, children take part in a major end of school production where they can demonstrate their skills in set and costume design.
Design and Technology
Design and technology is influential in and draws upon all areas of the curriculum. It supports children in a wide range of subjects, which give context for children’s working, planning and designing. Children are encouraged to think, discuss, work as a team, show ideas graphically and textually and work with a variety of materials. They also learn to use tools safely and effectively.
Musical activities within the school are based upon participation and enjoyment involving listening, performing and investigation. Singing, percussion instruments – both tuned and un- tuned – sound awareness, rhythm and pitch, responding to other people’s music-making, notation and composing all play a role in the children’s musical education, which is taught by our specialist music teacher.
Each year a class has the opportunity to learn an instrument through the Kingston Music and Arts Service (KMAS) Wider Opportunities Programme. For the last three years a different class has had the opportunity to learn how to play the African drums.
The popular Junior School Choir performs regularly throughout the year, both in local and school events.
Recorder and guitar playing is part of the school life and peripatetic teachers visit once a week to teach other instruments to individuals. The PFA purchased a baby grand piano for the school hall and a full set of drums. Pupils often give lunchtime recitals to their peers. As often as possible we widen children’s experience by inviting a variety of musical performers to the school as well as going on visits. The school uses every opportunity to celebrate children’s achievements in productions and concerts.
Physical education is not only thoroughly enjoyed by the children but is a very necessary part of the curriculum. Through physical education, children become aware of their own body and learn to control their movements. PE helps to create a healthy, balanced way of living and can relieve stress and aid relaxation. Apparatus and movement lessons are part of the activities for every class. The children also participate in a variety of sporting fixtures throughout the Borough.
The school has a large gymnasium and two courts for hockey, football, volleyball, netball, short cricket and rounders. All children play all these games and all children take part in at least two hours of physical activities a week.
All children are encouraged to take part in one of the many sporting activities available before, during or after school. These include football, netball, athletics, table tennis, skipping, judo, rounders, tennis, gymnastics, dance and cricket.
Swimming lessons are arranged for the children in Year 2 and 3. These take place at Kingston’s Kingfisher Pool with qualified instructors. Each child is expected to participate, and parents are invited to make a modest contribution to the cost of hiring the pool and the instructors. During Year 5 all children have the opportunity to take the cycling proficiency test to prepare them for cycling to their secondary school.