Curriculum - KS2

Primary National Strategy


Literacy remains vital and at the heart of the Primary National Strategy. Whilst the DfES continues to review and revise the framework of provision and to allow greater flexibility to schools, the development of effective communication skills is and will remain central to pupils' learning. Literacy not only unites the important skills of reading and writing, but also involves the oral skills of speaking and listening. The Water School Website, and the projects it suggests, offers many opportunities for discussion and literacy work across the whole National Curriculum.


The Primary National Strategy confirms the importance of numeracy and mathematics in education. The Framework for teaching mathematics: defines numeracy as “a proficiency which is developed mainly in mathematics but also in other subjects. It is more than an ability to do basic arithmetic. It involves developing confidence and competence with numbers and measures. It requires understanding of the number system, a repertoire of mathematical techniques, and an inclination and ability to solve quantitative or spatial problems in a range of contexts”.

Numeracy also demands understanding of the ways in which data is gathered by counting and measuring, and presented in graphs, diagrams, charts and tables. Handling data is of particular relevance to all subjects. The revised framework sees the creation of stronger links between the teaching of mathematics and its application to what is learned in all subjects across the curriculum as being of great importance.

Aspects of numeracy appear throughout the website and the activities which are associated with it. The project's 'real life' school context provides significant opportunities for gathering and presenting data and because water is all around makes the work even more valid and relevant.


There are many issues of Citizenship which are addressed by the Water School Website. Those which could be addressed by the material in the website have been identified. The full lists of notes and expectations should be viewed on:

“During key stage 2 pupils learn about themselves as growing and changing individuals with their own experiences and ideas, and as members of their communities. They become more mature, independent and self-confident. They learn about the wider world and the interdependence of communities within it. They develop their sense of social justice and moral responsibility and begin to understand that their own choices and behaviour can affect local, national or global issues and political and social institutions. They learn how to take part more fully in school and community activities.”

Knowledge, skills and understanding

1. Developing confidence and responsibility and making the most of their abilities pupils should be taught:

  • to face new challenges positively by collecting information, looking for help, making responsible choices, and taking action
  • to look after their money and realise that future wants and needs may be met through saving.

Preparing to play an active role as citizens

2. Pupils should be taught:

  • to research, discuss and debate topical issues, problems and events
  • that resources can be allocated in different ways and that these economic choices affect individuals, communities and the sustainability of the environment

Developing a healthy, safer lifestyle

3.Pupils should be taught:

  • what makes a healthy lifestyle, including the benefits of exercise and healthy eating, what affects mental health, and how to make informed choices

Developing good relationships and respecting the differences between people

4.Pupils should be taught:

  • that their actions affect themselves and others, to care about other people's feelings and to try to see things from their points of view

Breadth of study

5. During the key stage, pupils should be taught the Knowledge, skills and understanding through opportunities to:

  • take responsibility [for example, for planning and looking after the school environment]
  • make real choices and decisions [for example, about issues affecting their health and well-being; on the use of scarce resources; how to spend money, including pocket money and contributions to charities]

Education for Sustainable Development

Education for sustainable development enables pupils to develop the knowledge, skills, understanding and values to participate in decisions about the way we do things individually and collectively, both locally and globally. Clearly, this aspect is central to the ideas behind the website. Achieving ESD is a function of the whole curriculum some of the curriculum characteristics that promote ESD are:

  • key concepts: ESD involves an understanding of the key concepts of: interdependence; citizenship and stewardship; needs and rights of future generations; diversity; quality of life; sustainable change; uncertainty and precaution;
  • skills: development of a wide range of skills, e.g. critical thinking, finding information, weighing evidence and presenting reasoned argument on sustainable development issues, is central to ESD;
  • personal and social development: ESD involves personal and social development, e.g. an awareness of the needs of others and an appreciation of diverse viewpoints;
  • the global dimension: understanding of sustainable development is improved where issues are investigated at a local, national and global level, and where pupils are helped to understand the impact of the global dimension on their own lives
  • futures: pupils are encouraged to develop an understanding of the concept of possible and preferred futures.

Financial capability

Elements of PSHE and Citizenship reflect the fact that education is about helping pupils to develop the knowledge, skills and understanding they need, including developing financial capability, to live confident, independent lives. A key aim of the website is to develop the pupils' understanding of where the money comes from to pay for the water which is used in their school, and to realise that the savings made have a beneficial cost benefit ‘knock-on’ relationship, in that the money saved can then be spent on something else.

Financial capability is about making sensible choices in relation to managing money. It helps pupils make independent and informed decisions about keeping money safe, budgeting, spending, saving, sharing, borrowing and obtaining value for money. It helps pupils to develop a sense of responsibility, to understand their own and others' needs and to consider the effects of their decisions on themselves, their families, communities and the wider world.

Financial capability encompasses three interrelated themes. These themes should generally be taught together

Financial knowledge and understanding is about helping children to understand the concept of money. It means having knowledge and understanding of the nature of money and insight into its functions and uses. Developing financial understanding is the first step in ensuring that young people leaving school have the skills required to deal with everyday financial issues. It will also help them to make informed decisions and choices about their personal finances when the time comes.

Financial skills and competence is very much concerned with day-to-day money management and thinking about planning for the future. This means being able to apply knowledge and understanding of financial matters across a range of contexts: personal situations as well as situations beyond our immediate control. A financially competent person is able to identify and tackle problems or issues with confidence and is able to manage financial situations effectively and efficiently.

The Personal Finance Education Group - provide comprehensive one stop support for teachers.
You may also find the FSA's consumer website - useful.

Financial responsibility is about the wider impact of money and personal financial decisions, not only for an individual’s future, but also at a greater, societal level. It implies an understanding of how financial decisions can impact, not only on the person making the decision, but also on their family and community. Young people who are financially capable will be aware that financial decisions and actions are closely linked with value judgements of various kinds (social, moral, aesthetic, cultural, and environmental as well as economic) and therefore have social and ethical dimensions.

By monitoring water use, pupil’s become aware of how their actions can affect budgets and the money available to the school.


Mathematics equips pupils with a uniquely powerful set of tools to understand and change the world. These tools include logical reasoning, problem – solving skills and the ability to think in abstract ways.” (NC 2004 subject introduction – The importance of mathematics) There are many opportunities for enrichment of the Mathematics curriculum at KS 2 & 3 offered by the Water School Website. Some of the relevant statements from the National Curriculum are listed below:

“During key stage 2 pupils begin to use the number system more confidently. They move from counting reliably to calculating fluently with all four number operations. They always try to tackle a problem with mental methods before using any other approach. Pupils explore features of shape and space and develop their measuring skills in a range of contexts. They discuss and present their methods and reasoning using a wider range of mathematical language, diagrams and charts.

Breadth of Study

During the key stage, pupils are expected to be taught knowledge, skills and understanding through:

  • practical activity, exploration and discussion
  • using mathematical ideas in practical activities, then recording these using objects, pictures, diagrams, words, numbers and symbols
  • using mental images of numbers and their relationships to support the development of mental calculation strategies
  • estimating, drawing and measuring in a range of practical contexts
  • drawing inferences from data in practical activities
  • exploring and using a variety of resources and materials, including ICT
  • activities that encourage them to make connections between number work and other aspects of their work in mathematics.


“Science stimulates and excites pupil’s curiosity about phenomena and events in the world around them. It also satisfies this curiosity with knowledge. Because science links direct practical experience with ideas, it can engage learners at many levels. Scientific method is about developing and evaluating explanations through experimental evidence and modeling.” (NC 2004 subject introduction – The importance of science) There are many opportunities for enrichment of the Science curriculum at KS 2 & 3 offered by the Water School Website. Some of the relevant statements from the National Curriculum are listed below:

“During key stage 2 pupils learn about a wider range of living things, materials and phenomena. They begin to make links between ideas and to explain things using simple models and theories. They apply their knowledge and understanding of scientific ideas to familiar phenomena, everyday things and their personal health. They begin to think about the positive and negative effects of scientific and technological developments on the environment and in other contexts. They carry out more systematic investigations, working on their own and with others. They use a range of reference sources in their work. They talk about their work and its significance, and communicate ideas using a wide range of scientific language, conventional diagrams, charts and graphs.”

Breadth of study

1. During the key stage, pupils should be taught the knowledge, skills and understanding through:

  • a range of domestic and environmental contexts that are familiar and of interest to them
  • looking at the part science has played in the development of many useful things
  • using a range of sources of information and data, including ICT-based sources
  • using first-hand and secondary data to carry out a range of scientific investigations, including complete investigations.

2. During the key stage, pupils should be taught to:

  • use appropriate scientific language and terms, including SI units of measurement [for example, metre, newton], to communicate ideas and explain the behaviour of living things, materials, phenomena and processes.

Health and Safety

  • recognise that there are hazards in living things, materials and physical processes, and assess risks and take action to reduce risks to themselves and others.

Design and Technology

“Design and Technology prepares pupils to participate in tomorrow’s rapidly changing technologies. They learn to think and intervene creatively to improve the quality of life.” (NC 2004 subject introduction – The importance of design and technology). An important aspect of the website is for pupils to look at the technological equipment which can be used to reduce water consumption in the school. They are able to examine many of these items as animations.

“During key stage 2 pupils work on their own and as part of a team on a range of designing and making activities. They think about what products are used for and the needs of the people who use them. They plan what has to be done and identify what works well and what could be improved in their own and other people's designs. They draw on knowledge and understanding from other areas of the curriculum and use computers in a range of ways.”

Breadth of study

During the key stage, pupils should be taught the Knowledge, skills and understanding through:

  • investigating and evaluating a range of familiar products, thinking about how they work, how they are used and the views of the people who use them
  • focused practical tasks that develop a range of techniques, skills, processes and knowledge
  • design and make assignments using a range of materials, including electrical and mechanical components, food, mouldable materials, stiff and flexible sheet materials, and textiles.

Information and Communication Technology

Information and communication technology prepares pupils to participate in a rapidly changing world in which work and other activities are increasingly transformed by access to varied and developing technology.” (NC 2004 subject introduction – The importance of ICT)

“During key stage 2 pupils use a wider range of ICT tools and information sources to support their work in other subjects. They develop their research skills and decide what information is appropriate for their work. They begin to question the plausibility and quality of information. They learn how to amend their work and present it in a way that suits its audience.”

Breadth of study

During the key stage, pupils should be taught the Knowledge, skills and understanding through:

  • working with a range of information to consider its characteristics and purposes [for example, collecting factual data from the internet and a class survey to compare the findings]
  • working with others to explore a variety of information sources and ICT tools [for example, searching the internet for information about a different part of the world, designing textile patterns using graphics software, using ICT tools to capture and change sounds]
  • investigating and comparing the uses of ICT inside and outside school.


“Geography provides and answers questions about the natural and human worlds, using different scales of enquiry to view them from different perspectives. It develops knowledge of places and environments throughout the world, and understanding of maps and a range of investigative and problem solving skills both inside and outside the classroom. As such it prepares pupils for adult life and employment. Geography is a focus within the curriculum for resolving issues about the environment and sustainable development.” (NC 2004 subject introduction – The importance of geography)

During key stage 2 pupils investigate a variety of people, places and environments at different scales in the United Kingdom and abroad, and start to make links between different places in the world. They find out how people affect the environment and how they are affected by it. They carry out geographical enquiry inside and outside the classroom. In doing this they ask geographical questions, and use geographical skills and resources such as maps, atlases, aerial photographs and ICT.

Breadth of study

During the key stage, pupils should be taught the Knowledge, skills and understanding through the study of two localities and three themes:

  • a locality in the United Kingdom
  • a locality in a country that is less economically developed


  • water and its effects on landscapes and people, including the physical features of rivers [for example, flood plain]or coasts [for example, beach], and the processes of erosion and deposition that affect them
  • how settlements differ and change, including why they differ in size and character [for example, commuter village, seaside town], and an issue arising from changes in land use [for example, the building of new housing or a leisure complex]
  • an environmental issue, caused by change in an environment [for example, increasing traffic congestion, hedgerow loss, drought], and attempts to manage the environment sustainably [for example, by improving public transport, creating a new nature reserve, reducing water use].

In their study of localities and themes, pupils should:

  • study at a range of scales - local, regional and national
  • study a range of places and environments in different parts of the world, including the United Kingdom and the European Union
  • carry out fieldwork investigations outside the classroom.