The Primary Teacher's Guide to the New National Curriculum

The Primary Teacher's Guide to the New National Curriculum

The Primary Teacher's Guide to the New National Curriculum

The Primary Teacher's Guide to the New National Curriculum


This guide gives an overview of the curriculum arrangements which took effect in August 1995. The book outlines the main changes to the original National Curriculum and gives examples of ways to teach the new curriculum, together with enquiry tasks to take the teacher forward. It also covers each of the subjects of the revised National Curriculum, locating them within a context of whole curriculum planning. Looking at issues of differentiation, the book explores those additional elements of the curriculum, such as cross curricular themes and drama, that primary schools will wish to cover.


The new National Curriculum has now emerged and includes many changes to the existing curriculum. It will have far reaching effects on the content and delivery of the primary curriculum. This book is designed to give you a quick and accessible overview of the new curriculum arrangements. Whether you are an experienced teacher in a primary school, a newly qualified teacher or a student in training, you are probably anxious to gain an insight into the new curriculum as quickly and as painlessly as possible. We have tried to create a book that clearly and succinctly identifies the changes and their implications for practice.

The Department for Education (DFE) does not generally produce its National Curriculum material in a form that makes it an easy or enjoyable read, although this version is an improvement on previous ones. You may have put a great deal of effort into understanding and interpreting earlier versions of the National Curriculum and be unenthusiastic about starting this process again. For these and other reasons, we have tried to do much of the initial interpretation for you.

This book is a guide to the essential features of the new National Curriculum, covering all subjects within that curriculum. It also describes the recently introduced curriculum guidelines for religious education and discusses a number of issues that emerge from these guidelines. in order to take you beyond a factual understanding, content and enquiry tasks (a central feature of every chapter) focus upon the development of key understandings and the ways that these may be put into effect in the primary classroom.

At the moment the government intends that schools will be inspected by the Office for Standards in Education (OFSTED) once every four years. Unlike previous inspection regimes, these inspections focus on judgment at the expense of development. If your school is due to be inspected during or soon after the publication of the new National Curriculum you will wish to be sure you can answer questions about your understanding of the new Orders and your school’s response to them. We hope that this book will provide an accessible starting point for this understanding and action.

It is intended that you could use the book either as a means of gaining an immediate understanding of the new curriculum as a whole, or as a reference book . . .

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