Seven Hills Primary School

"A Place Where Everyone is valued"

Foundation Subject Overviews

Nursery Foundation Subjects Overview

IQ How do I feel?

With our class novel ‘Owl babies’ we build on children’s experiences of their emotions, how to recognize and describe them. They are beginning to have/make their own friends and build independence. They have a sense of their own family and relations. This helps with nursery and eventually school routines.

IQ Who lives in the forest?

In The Gruffalo, children explore the creatures that live in the forest, expanding on the Owl Babies, looking at animal habitats/what they eat. Reception Class expand on this with Polar habitats, minibeasts, food chains and African animals.

IQ What will I see on my journey?

Using the ‘Bear Hunt’ as the class novel, the children notice details of their environment, think about seasons and the weather.

Reception class follow this with ‘Dinosaur Hunt’, changing the characters in the book, and further exploring taking a journey.

IQ How many legs have I got?

During the ‘Hungry Caterpillar’ topic, Nursery children will explore minibeast habitats and the life cycle of the butterfly.

This is expanded on in Reception where the children build on the life cycle theme.

IQ Who you gonna call?

The nonfiction book ‘Emergency’ looks at the emergency services and their vehicles, and who helps us when we are hurt or ill.

This is built on through RE and the Superheroes topic in reception

IQ Can I be a pirate?

Using the series of pirate books as the underlying theme, children are encouraged to use their imagination, take on a role, sing and build their confidence and awareness as they learn to play with others.

Reception build on the Pirate topic through the ‘Explorers and Travel’ topic.


Reception Foundation Subjects Overview

IQ Who Lives at Donaldson’s dairy?

Children build on Nursery concepts of recognising emotions and self confidence/self awareness, and begin to look at similarities and differences through the ‘Hairy Maclairy’ series. The children also find out about where milk comes from and this links to healthy lifestyles, which is expanded on in Year 1

IQ will I meet a dinosaur?

Nursery children paint and draw the Gruffalo, Reception children learn about dinosaurs through ‘Tyrannosaurus Drip’, and build on these Nursery art skills to paint dinosaurs and illustrate their writing with more detail.

This paves the way for Year 1 to learn more sophisticated painting techniques.

IQ Why can’t a penguin and a Polar bear be friends?

Being ‘explorers’ the Reception children build on their imaginative and role play experiences in Nursery and compare environments such as polar regions and Morley, using ‘Lost and Found’. (We also use ‘Where the Wild Things Are’ and ‘Pirates Love Underpants to further enhance the topic)

In Year1 children build on their concept of different places through Katie Morag etc.

IQ What is space like?/IQ what happens in spring?

Nursery learn about environments and places, Reception class build on this with a journey into space, reading ‘the Way Back Home’

The children then learn ‘Little Red Hen’ and have the experience of hatching chicks.

Year 1 build on this with life cycles and animals

IQ Are dragons always bad?

Linking to the characters in the Gruffalo, the children in reception learn about traditional tales, and how we can change and adapt these stories. This involves reading ‘There’s No Dragon in This Story’. We also read ‘Handa’s Surprise’ and learn about Africa and African animals.

Year 1 expand with learning about different animals.

IQ What makes me super?

Building on PSED learning in Nursery, the children discover their special skills and prepare for their transition to Year 1.


Year 1 Foundation Subjects Overview

Is everywhere like Morley?  Book Title: The Katie Morag Stories

With our topic ‘Our World’ there is a focus on the British Isles and in particular the Isle of Struay, it’s similarities and differences to Morley and learning more about communities. This links to FS2 topic of ‘houses / homes’ and the community.  Building on communities, Year 2 will learn about the Stone Age settlement.  Children can use their prior knowledge to distinguish the difference in different settlements / communities and why (for e.g. discussing the time period and the influence of this).  Year 1 also have a focus on the postal services around the world, looking at uniforms, means of travel and places around the world.  FS2 develop children’s understanding about the postal service, as children hear the stories ‘The Jolly Christmas Postman’ (Autumn term) and ‘The Jolly Postman’ (Summer term.)

In history, pupils in Year 1 build on their Reception learning about ‘People Who Help’ when studying Florence Nightingale. We make basic comparisons to nursing in the present day and this supports Year 2’S learning on Mary Seacole. 


Have you been down to the woods today?  Book Title: The Magic Faraway Tree

During the ‘Wonderful Woodlands’ topic children have the opportunity to learn more about animals and their habitats.  FS2 study African animals and this will allow children to understand that animals live in different environments. Year 1 build on this further, and in particular look at woodland animals.  Year 2 focus on one particular animal in depth- the fox drawing on previous knowledge they have obtained.

In history FS2 learn more about how we travel and what an explorer is.  Year 1 make comparisons between Christopher Columbus and James Cook, finding out in more detail how they travelled, where they explored and how they differ from today’s explorers.  Year 2 focus on a more modern day explorer Neil Armstrong and how his adventures were similar or different.


What makes you brave? Book Title: Charlotte’s Web

During ‘Creatures Big and Small’, pupils explore fiction texts to build upon learning from Foundation Stage topics on minibeasts. Children in Year 1 also learn about animals including humans in science and this forms a basic foundation in preparation for Year 2 when the revisit animals and humans, but develop their understanding of human lifestyle including the food pyramid and animals and their offspring. Children in Reception have previously studied books such as The Little Red Hen and The Hungry Hen so have an awareness of farm animals and their purpose. Year 1 pupils will extend this understanding of farming further during Charlotte’s Web and also compare farming from the past. This links well to Year 2 as they look at early farming techniques at the end of the Stone Age.

Charlotte’s Web highlights a number of social and emotional aspects such as loyalty, courage and bravery. The children’s prior learning about feelings from studying Where the Wild Things Are will help them to empathise and also prepare them for content in Year 2 texts such as The Midnight Fox.


Year 2 Foundation Subjects Overview

Were They the Stepping Stones to the Modern World? Book Title: Cave Baby, Ug, Boy Genius, The Boy with the Bronze Axe, Stone Age Boy

Within our topic of ‘The Stone Age’ the children will be learning about different types of early settlements. We will be learning about how people lived in the Stone Age; their houses, tools and weapons, diet and animals. This continues from prior learning in FS2 and Year 1 around communities. They will be continuing  their investigation of settlements and farming but in another time period. In Year 2 children will progress their learning by comparing the Stone Age with modern life, looking at artefacts and pictures of Stone Age villages and using their prior knowledge to predict what they would be used for and sorting different features of the Stone Age into the three different periods.

The children begin their learning of historical time periods in Year 2 with the first humans, The Stone Age. This further continues in KS2 when they learn about Vikings, Romans and Victorians.


What Makes a Fox Fantastic? Book Title: Fantastic Mr Fox, The Midnight Fox

During the ‘Animals and their Habitats’ topic we will be building upon the children’s prior knowledge of animals including humans fromFS2 and Year 1 and preparing them to learn about the rainforest habitat in Year 3. In FS2 the children have learnt about African animals and in Year 1 they have learnt about woodland animals; we develop this further by focusing on one animal, the fox. We look at the red fox and the how it has adapted to survive and then we will compare two foxes from differing climates, the Fennec fox that lives in the Saharan desert and the Arctic fox, and how they have adapted to these two contrasting climates. 
When studying Mary Seacole the children will further develop the learning about ‘People Who Help’ from Reception and the learning they did about Florence Nightingale in Year 1. We will begin to look at Human Rights and Rights and Responsibilities which will be further developed in Year 4’s topic of Victorians and Year 5’s topic surrounding the novel ‘Trash’.


Whodunit? Book Title: The Secret Seven

Moving onto Year 2’s ‘Our Country’ topic, while comparing when The Secret Seven was set to now, the children will begin to look at post-war Britain which will be further developed in Year 6 when they study World War 2. We will also be continuing the work Year 1 have done about the UK and its capital cities and further developing this by locating them on a map and looking at the characteristics of these places. We will also be studying London in the Stuart Age when we study the Great Fire of London and the effects this had on London, whether they were positive or negative. This will be further developed in Year 4 when they study the Victorian Age. They will also be further developing the work they did in Year 1 around loyalty, courage and bravery when they read ‘Charlotte’s Web’.


Year 3 Foundation Subjects Overview

How important is the rainforest? Book Title: The Jungle Book

Within our topic of ‘Radiant Rainforests’, we focus on the beauty within the Rainforest and how the Rainforest has an impact on the world. We look at deforestation causing the decrease of the orangutan population due to the high demand of palm oil in various products we use in society. In Year 2, pupils learn about the Stone Age and the tools that people would have used back then to survive; in year 3, children progress on to understand that such tools are still used in modern society. Rainforest tribal people depend on the earth to survive and use primeval/stone age tools and pottery in everyday life such as clay pots and grain grinders, much like the people of the Stone Age.

In year 2, pupils begin to learn about the habitats and various animals that are in the world around us. There is a focus on creatures such as foxes, badgers etc. During Year 3, pupils progress their learning to understand about the exotic creatures that inhabit the rainforest and what they do to survive and adapt to the everyday changes in the rainforest. During the topic, we encourage pupils to compare the exotic plants and animals to the ‘everyday’ creatures in our environment, for example, how does the red-eyed tree frog differ from our type of frog? Can you compare the Amazon Rainforest to Sherwood Forest or woodland in our school areas?, which links closely to the pupil’s FS learning of the everyday world.

Can You Walk Like an Egyptian? Book Title: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe

During our ‘Awesome Egyptians’ topic, pupils are expected to understand about the daily lives, geographical landscape and beliefs of Ancient Egypt. To achieve greater depth in Geography, pupils are to learn about the overall landscape, land types and landmarks that make up Ancient Egypt; this lays a good geographical basis for the pupils Year 4 learning of South Africa due to Egypt sharing a similar climate and land type and continent (Africa). Pupils are encouraged to look at Egypt in the  context of the whole of the African continent and will support making those links to the Year 4 South African learning.

When pupils reach Year 5, they are expected to progress onto the topic of Ancient Greece. Ancient Greek and Egyptian civilisations were established and thriving around the same time period in the timeline of History, they therefore share certain similarities in traditions. An example of how the year 5 and year 3 topics link is the creation of particular inventions, pottery and burial rituals; when pupils reach Year 5, they can compare and contrast these traditions/ foundations of these civilisations which allows them to reach the greater depth standard in History.

Would you be a Mayan? Book Title: The Nowhere Emporium

During our final topic in Year 3 of ‘Madness of the Mayans’, pupils are expected to understand the importance of chocolate in the Mayan civilisation and understand the traditions and beliefs of the Mayans (no matter how bizarre they may be). The Mayan’s deemed the cocoa bean to be a marvellous ‘treasure’ and were the first inventors of chocolate; during the pupils learning throughout school, they learn the different definitions of ‘treasure’ for different civilisations, such as Ancient Egypt (year 3) and Ancient Greece (year 5) deemed gold and precious gems as treasure, the Stone Age people (year 2) deemed stone to be their treasure and during World War (year 6), there was no treasure but they cherished food and rations! A comparison can therefore be made with these various historical times about what they defined as treasure.

During Year 4, pupils will be making an airship based on the class novel of ‘Cogheart’; the skill of paper mache will begin in year 3 when children use these artistic skills to create a traditional Mayan mask. Although it is not linked to another year group, the creation of a traditional mask will be undertaken during the children’s Ancient Egypt learning where they recreate the funerary mask of Pharaoh Tutankhamun.


Year 4 Foundation Subjects Overview

Can You Eat Off Table Mountain? Book Title: The Fastest Boy In The World

Within our topic of ‘Amazing Africa’ our focus upon Nelson Mandela and Apartheid shows links to Human Rights and Rights and Responsibilities. Not only does this link with our own school procedures and our children’s rights and responsibilities but with Year 3’s topic about Ancient Egypt. Children can compare the treatment of slaves and pharaohs with the segregation and treatment of people of different races in South Africa. In Year 3’s topic about rainforests children focus upon the natural beauty of the rainforest and ‘hidden treasures’. Links can be made between this and the beauty of the three African countries that Year 4 study (Morocco, Ethiopia and South Africa).


Is My Teacher As Mean As Ma’am? Book Title: Cogheart

During the ‘Vile Victorians’ topic, children can compare slavery in Ancient Egypt and discuss the end of slavery in the British Empire. This can  be further developed in Year 5 with their topic surrounding the novel ‘Trash’ which relates closely to Human Rights and Rights and Responsibilities in a more mature and topical manner.  Following on from this, Year 4’s Victorian topic looks at Human Rights in regards to the Education Act, factories and mining laws and child labour laws. Whilst exploring mills and local industries in the Victorian era this builds upon exploring and contrasting localities in Year 1, developing their knowledge of Morley through the ages. The study of Queen Victoria’s reign and the start of the British Empire will be further developed in Year 6 by comparing and contrasting the Roman Empire.


Was Elizabethan Life ‘Ruff’? Book Title: A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Moving onto Year 4’s ‘Shakespearean Times’ topic, while discussing explorers such as Drake and Raleigh, children can make comparisons with KS1’s topics of settlements and explorers. Moreover, this will be further developed moving into Year 5 with the study of the Vikings. Children can makes links not only through mapping journeys but also about decisions regarding why communities chose to settle there. Furthermore, children discuss and explore the development of travel and communication and compare this to the present day.  Through the study of Shakespeare and ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ children’s love of language can be mirrored with the Shakespearean’s love of language and the theme of beauty and treasure previously discussed in Year 3.


Year 5 Foundation Subjects Overview

What legacies Have the Ancient Greeks Left Behind? Book Title: Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief

Within this topic, children will learn about the civilization of Ancient Greece, a study of the country, its geographical landmarks and their beliefs. This learning builds on skills gained in Year 3 through their topic ‘Awesome Egyptians’, where children learn about different Gods and how they were invented to explain life and how things were created. Children will research and discover that many aspects of modern day life can be traced back to life as an Ancient Greek, especially through our learning on democracy and the Olympics. Children in Year 5 will continue to develop these skills as they progress into Year 6 where they will learn about the Romans and their impact on modern day life.


Let Us Go Viking? Book Title: Kensuke’s Kingdom

Through our ‘Explorers’ topic, children in Year 5 will become familiar with daily life as a Viking, which include hierarchy, law and punishment and survival during this barbaric era. They will also learn about slavery as an aspect of the working life of a Viking. This links to Year 3’s Ancient Egyptian topic where they will also learn about slavery, as well as Year 4’s topic ‘Vile Victorians’ where children will learn about how slavery was abolished. In Year 1, children gain a basic understanding of explorers such as Christopher Columbus and James Cook, including how they travelled and where they explored. In Year 5, these skills will be developed in greater depth when children research other sea explorers. This will include looking at chronology and how explorer’s modes of transport have enhanced over time.


What are our rights as humans?  Book Title: Trash

Through this topic, children will learn about what human rights are and how they came to be agreed within the Universal Declaration.  They will also compare and contrast the rights between adults and children. Alongside this, they will be able to state the differences between justice and freedom. Children will make the links with their learning of the declaration with Year 2’s learning of Mary Seacole, where she is known and admired for her bravery and determination to help British soldiers during the Crimean War, regardless of her help being refused due to her race. Through knowledge gained about the Education Act and the factories, mining and child labour laws, (‘Vile Victorians’ – Year 4) children will begin to have a deeper understanding of our rights as individuals in the 21st century.  However, children will learn through a study of Brazil that our basic needs as a human being are not always met.


 Year 6 Foundation Subjects Overview

What Legacies Did the Ancient Romans Leave Behind? Book Title: The Thieves of Ostia

The topic ‘Romans on the Rampage’ builds on Year 5’s topic on Ancient Greece and looks at the lasting influence the Romans had on the western world. We start by looking at the history of Rome – legend and fact – and understand where in Europe Rome is, and how the Romans came to extend their influence and create such a large and influential empire. Children understand the power and organisation of the Roman army and ask and answer historically relevant questions about why it was so successful. Looking at the Roman legacy, children come to understand how many aspects of modern life can, in effect, be traced back in some way to the Romans by studying the cities, the rule of law, Roman numerals and the calendar we use today. 


Was it Britain’s Finest Hour? Book Title: Letters From the Lighthouse

The ‘Woeful Second World War’ topic focuses on the outbreak of World War 2, what is meant by the ‘Phoney War’ and why the Battle of Britain was such a significant turning point in British History. Looking at the location of the countries involved highlights links to the British Empire and its commonwealth countries. In addition, children will research the lives of the ordinary people who faced the Blitz with a focus on rationing, the Blackout, evacuation and the role of women. Links to human rights and responsibilities learnt in Y4 will be built on as we examine the lives of the Jewish people during World War 2 and cover the terrible discrimination, oppression and liberation of the concentration camps.