The ODA Curriculum: Core Knowledge, Character, and Cultural Capital
One Degree Academy offers a rigorous academic curriculum that promotes the learning of powerful knowledge and character attributes. We believe all young people can attain a place at university or become successfully employed in a career with prospects and see all aspects of a child’s development as crucial to achieving this. Our curriculum is designed to prepare pupils for university education and future employment.
We believe that every child has the potential to succeed academically through dedication and hard work. This is why we emphasise core academic subjects like English and Maths, and a core knowledge curriculum, as these subjects provide a solid foundation for acquiring other skills and learning. We also place strong emphasis on reading, which we believe is a key driver of academic success. We also set high targets for attainment to ensure that every pupil achieves.
Core Curriculum – Building Powerful Knowledge
Students learn about the key concepts, knowledge and big ideas which have come to shape the world we live in. We aim for a world class curriculum to inspire all students to understand the ideas and powerful knowledge central to building social capital. Our curriculum is designed as a pathway to higher education, work and civic participation.
Our curriculum is reverse engineered from university readiness at 18. We backwards plan the concepts, knowledge and skills required for success at A level and beyond and teach students age-appropriate ‘junior versions’ of these big ideas in each subject discipline in each year.
STRIVE Character curriculum – Developing non-cognitive capacities
We believe that knowledge without character is pointless. Integrity at ODA means that we believe in the whole child and their cultural, social, emotional, physical and spiritual development. This is achieved through our unique STRIVE character curriculum and our enrichment curriculum.
At One Degree Academy we believe that character strengths, skills and mindsets are not fixed. We believe these vital character skills such as resilience, optimism and self-control can be taught and developed. This approach runs through everything we do. See our Values and Ethos page for more details.
Learning from the latest scientific research about the brain and child development, we teach approaches to character development that enable children to learn and flourish. We work with our partners at the Anna Feud Centre to apply the latest thinking and science about brain development to our teaching, learning and curriculum. Our unique Family Learning programme, designed with and led by consultant psychotherapists, shares this learning with parents and allows parents to better support children at home.
Enrichment curriculum – Raising aspirations and building cultural capital
At its heart, our approach to enrichment is not predicated on a series of ‘after school clubs’ or ‘extra-curricular’ activities that some students can choose to opt for – though we do offer after school clubs and wrap around care for those that need it. Rather, our enrichment programme is an integral part of the curriculum – given equal importance and weight to our core knowledge curriculum. It serves as a vehicle in which children can develop their character attributes in a range of different contexts.
All children at One Degree are entitled to the following enrichment curriculum, delivered by specialist teachers:
- Visual arts
- Arts and Crafts
- PE including: dance, gymnastics, multi sports
As well as our Knowledge and STRIVE curriculum, we have backwards-planned our cultural curriculum so that during their time with us, every One Degree Student is exposed to a wide array of different cultural experiences – ranging from learning how to network and shake someone’s hand, to visiting the Theatre or attending a Black-Tie event or residential trip. We believe that to truly prepare students for the world beyond One Degree, we have a responsibility to give them access to a wide range of experiences and help them make the most of these experiences.
All our activities will share a common aim: to inspire minds, broaden horizons, develop character and enhance cultural awareness. From a young age, pupils will participate in university outreach programmes and undertake inspiring work experience. We will also encourage our pupils to take pride in and contribute to their communities, by volunteering at local charities and taking part in local campaigns.