Cornerstones Curriculum 22: a fully sequenced and interconnected primary curriculum




05th July 2021

Cornerstones Curriculum 22: a fully sequenced and interconnected primary curriculum
Cornerstones Curriculum 22: a fully sequenced and interconnected primary curriculum

Our fully sequenced, connected curriculum puts you ahead of the game for meeting current educational expectations.

There’s no avoiding it; having a well sequenced, ambitious and connected curriculum is one of the most critical priorities for primary schools in England. It’s central to Ofsted’s quality of education judgement, so, particularly if you’re due an inspection, your curriculum needs to be expertly constructed to enable your children to learn more, understand more and remember more.

Correctly sequencing your curriculum is a complex, time-consuming task, which demands curriculum and subject expertise. Our curriculum has everything you need to achieve this, saving you time, money, and unnecessary stress and workload.

Primary school in Wales? Read our tips on using Cwricwlwm Maestro to implement your curriculum here.

Curriculum 22

Curriculum 22 is a fully sequenced and interconnected curriculum that begins in Nursery and develops across key stages to Year 6. Available on our online platform, Curriculum Maestro, the curriculum is ambitious in content and expertly crafted, with stringent sequencing and a web of multidisciplinary and subject connections. The curriculum is specially designed to help children build and sequence knowledge, without cognitive overload. In short, we’ve done all the structural work for you, so you’re free to focus on personalising the finer details to reflect the unique character of your school.

Curriculum structure

Curriculum 22 is carefully designed to help children learn and retain the required subject knowledge and skills in the correct sequence. Built on the national curriculum programmes of study, the curriculum begins with Big Ideas or higher-level concepts that steer the whole curriculum. These Big Ideas are broken down into smaller component parts, which we call aspects. Aspects are further broken down to form a robust knowledge and skills framework that underpins the whole curriculum. The framework provides you with clear endpoints and curriculum-related expectations, from the Early Years to Year 6.

Our curriculum terminology
big idea Higher-level, larger concepts that link subjects and connect the whole curriculum.
aspect Key concepts and smaller component parts of larger concepts.
knowledge Specific facts or truth components that include substantive, declarative or explicit statements.
skill Use and application of composite knowledge. A skill statement will often contain implicit, procedural and disciplinary knowledge.

View the Curriculum 22 overview

View the history subject overview sample

Curriculum sequencing 

Curriculum sequencing is the most critically important part of your curriculum. Without the correct subject sequencing, children will not have the building blocks to create a robust subject or concept schema. An effective curriculum needs correct sequencing within and across the subjects. This is so that concepts that span multiple subjects are cohesively mapped for maximum cognitive impact.

For example, the diagram in the download below demonstrates how the concept of climate is constructed and sequenced across our curriculum.

View curriculum sequencing example

Listen to our podcast episode on curriculum sequencing

Sequencing subject-specific vocabulary

Subject-specific vocabulary is a crucial part of a well sequenced curriculum. Vocabulary should be carefully mapped out across your curriculum to clarify when technical vocabulary phrases are introduced and revisited. In our curriculum, vocabulary is clearly mapped to ensure that children learn the correct words and phrases in the right order. This enables children to articulate their learning with confidence.

Organisation of content

The content of our curriculum is broad, varied and engaging and covers all statutory content set out in the subject programmes of study. In Years 1 to 6, curriculum content is organised into a range of main and mini subject-driven projects. Main projects span a whole term and are focused on geography and history. The main curriculum projects also include English packs and a book or novel study. Mini projects can be taught over a term or half term and are subject-focused for science (coming in spring 22), art and design, and design technology. The curriculum also includes White Rose Maths termly projects.

Our Early Years projects are carefully sequenced into half-termly main and mini projects for Nursery and Reception.

Download the Cornerstones Curriculum 22 overviews below.

View Cornerstones Curriculum 22 overview (single age)

View Cornerstones Curriculum 22 overview (mixed age)

A knowledge-rich approach

The curriculum is ambitious, steeped in meaningful and interesting facts and information. These facts and information work together to create powerful subject knowledge. Engaging with knowledge-led learning can be challenging for some children, so to support this, we also provide a wealth of child-friendly and engaging knowledge organisers, videos, presentations, exciting lessons and activity plans, plus low stakes quizzes and tests. Such resources support teachers to teach and inspire children to want to know more and do more. As is the case when starting any ambitious, well-sequenced curriculum, you should allow time for the transition and embedding stages as children build their knowledge and skills through school.

‘We chose Cornerstones because we wanted a high-quality curriculum for our children. We wanted full coverage and to make sure that it was well connected not through ad hoc links, but really meaningful links. The new Cornerstones knowledge-rich projects offer us thorough and robust content.’  Carrie Kiselis, Deputy Headteacher, Canon Sharples C of E Primary School and Nursery

Articulating your subject sequence

Articulating the sequence and complexity of your curriculum can be difficult, particularly if your curriculum plans are paper-based or stored digitally on different platforms. Our curriculum and all its supporting resources live in one place on our online platform, Curriculum Maestro. Maestro allows all your curriculum documentation, planning, timetabling and assessments to be stored and organised so that they are easy to edit, adapt and share across the school. Articulating your curriculum using Curriculum Maestro makes curriculum management incredibly easy for senior leaders, subject leaders and classroom teachers.

Making it your own

Curriculum 22 is the most interconnected and sequenced curriculum available. Because of this, we wouldn’t advise changing the order of main or mini projects. However, the flexibility and functionality of Maestro does enable you to adapt and edit lesson and project content and take account of your school’s needs, strengths and context.

‘We’re strong advocates of Maestro: it’s allowed our teachers to focus on how to teach, not just what to teach.’  Justin Cowley, Deputy Headteacher, Mendell Primary School

Book a demo of the curriculum and platform

A brand-new area on Maestro 

All schools who implement Curriculum 22 will be able to access a brand-new area of Curriculum Maestro called CurriculumPRO. CurriculumPRO enables you to view and demonstrate the sequencing and connectivity of this curriculum at the click of a button. We’re confident CurriculumPRO will become an invaluable tool for all school and curriculum leaders wanting to demonstrate their curriculum provision, both internally and externally.

Curriculum and subject overviews

Schools also have access to overview documents which explain the rationale behind the curriculum structure, and how subjects develop over time. These handy downloadable documents support senior, curriculum and subject leaders to articulate their curriculum to inspectors and stakeholders clearly. If you use Maestro, you can find these oveviews in the Library in your menu and share them on your school’s website.

Take action now

Due to demand, we’re bringing forward the launch of Curriculum 22. You can now implement it this year. You’ll have access to maths, geography, history, art and design, design and technology projects and English packs, with science mini projects and resources being added from early spring, 2022.

If you are an existing Maestro customer and want to start using Curriculum 22 this academic year, simply click ‘Design and lead’ in the menu, then ‘Design new curriculum’, and you can create it from there. Please read this blog, which explains more about implenting the curriculum and allowing time for it to embed.

Over the year, we’ll be releasing more content, resources and functionality to help you build, deliver and articulate the curriculum. Acting now will not only provide you with a dynamic new curriculum but will put you in a strong and positive position to meet curriculum expectations of the current educational climate.

Want to find out more?

Book a demo of the curriculum and platform

Find out how to implement Curriculum 22

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    Reviews Book a Demo Reviews

    We are in a much better place with CM than with our old curriculum. We will be making it more bespoke in the second year.

    Conrad Fox – Headteacher, Hunmanby Primary School, England


    I have used Cornerstones from its first launch. The product has been refined over time as it is driven by feedback from schools and teachers delivering the content. The company is also responsive to a school's needs.

    Lindsey Wain – Deputy headteacher, Hartburn Primary School, England


    Maestro is a real time saver, particularly for leadership teams and subject leaders. There is a wealth of information and resources which can be used and adapted by creative skills teachers. The way the curriculum is mapped is excellent and was commented on in a very recent Ofsted inspection.

    Charlotte Gibbins – Thurlstone Primary School, England


    I have recommended and told many other schools and school staff about it. I would always though suggest that they need to ensure it is right for their school setting and the needs of their staff and pupils.

    Kathryn – Teacher, Langton Primary School


    It has been a revelation. Staff are finding their way through it and if we have any questions, the support from Cornerstones is amazing. We always get answers to our questions. It is now our one-stop-shop for curriculum with linked up thinking and approach through an intuitive and user-friendly system.

    Moira Cross – Executive head, Dordon Primary School