Our Academics

As with all schools, we follow the Northern Ireland Curriculum – however, we feel that we offer it in a way that fully embraces our child-centred ethos.
 
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LANGUAGE & LITERACY

Our children participate in a wide range of activities in order to develop skills in the three main areas
of English, i.e. Reading, Writing and Talking and Listening.

We place a high value on the development of literacy skills, as literacy is the key that opens the door to so many other areas of learning. Children are introduced to reading as a purposeful activity that is interesting and enjoyable. The children are encouraged to develop an enthusiasm for books and hopefully,

this will establish a lifelong love of literature. Children, from an early age, develop presentation skills through dedicated ‘Hot Spot’ time and then into more structured presentations as they get older.

A structured reading programme is used and we have a wide range of reading texts throughout the school. Reading includes stories, poems, plays and non-fiction texts. Children are encouraged to write in a variety of genres and to form letters correctly.

Within talking and listening, children develop the ability to express their own ideas and feelings, as well as to present their thoughts and information
to others.

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MATHEMATICS & NUMERACY

Throughout the school, children are given many practical experiences and activities in all areas of mathematics.

We promote thinking and problem solving as we want our children to become confident mathematicians. We use a wide variety of commercial schemes and practical equipment, including a wide range of

ICT resources.

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THE ARTS

Art, music and drama all play an important role
in the full development of each child. Children
are encouraged to participate in singing and to experiment with instruments from a variety of traditions and cultures. In Primary 3, all children learn to play the Celtic lyre. A specialist music teacher comes school to teach the children.

We have a dedicated choir that is used to performing in many events, including the BBC NI Choir of the Year.

Recognising the value of creativity, we aim to develop pupils’ confidence and pleasure in arts, craft and design. Children are given opportunities to work practically and imaginatively with a variety of resources. They are encouraged to experiment with a range of materials and express themselves in an individual way.

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PHYSICAL EDUCATION

Through physical education children are given experience of a variety of physical activities including gymnastics, dance and games. In addition to the Northern Ireland PE curriculum, we presently offer after-school clubs for tennis, football, netball, ju-jitsu and ‘Monkeynastics’. The children, also, have regular Gaelic football lessons as well as support from the local rugby and cricket clubs.

All of the above are taken by qualified coaches.

The Primary 1 children also enjoy a daily session
of Primary Movement. This is a unique movement programme which seeks to enhance the maturation of the central nervous system. It has been shown to have a significant impact on educational attainment for all children and especially for children with specific learning difficulties, including dyslexia.

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WORLD AROUND US

(History, Geography and Science)

The study of history and geography offers children the opportunity to develop their investigative skills
- finding out about people and places from past and present, in their local and wider environments. Linking the past with the present heightens awareness of how our interactions with the environment, and with each other, affect the way we live today. History allows children to share, study and enjoy aspects of their culture, past and present.

This area of study includes finding out about
how things work and about the natural world. It involves the development of observational skills, investigations, discovery and creativity. The children are also given opportunities to find out about themselves and a variety of plant and animal life. Through activities like cooking, they use everyday materials and see, for example, how these are changed during heating or cooling. The school grounds, as they develop, are used to observe seasonal changes and the world of nature. Our WAU Coordinator also encourages STEM ambassadors in the school.

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(USING) ICT

Millennium Integrated Primary is proud to be part of the worldwide Microsoft Showcase School network and was the first primary school in Northern Ireland to achieve the status.

The school is recognised on an international level for the leading innovative work that occurs on a daily basis. As well as this, we have many members of staff who have taken on further professional development resulting in a range of Microsoft, Apple and Google Educator certifications.

The school has an ambitious strategy for embedding ICT into the daily teaching and invests in equipment to promote and support this. We have interactive whiteboards throughout the school. Each member
of the teaching staff has been issued with a personal device to support their teaching and each class has access to a large number of portable devices. This will either be an iPad or Windows device as our strategy is to encourage skills across the devices.

PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT

At Millennium we place high value on this aspect of a child’s education. We recognise the importance of each child developing good self-esteem and confidence. We want our children to develop a positive attitude to learning, which accepts that getting things wrong is part of the learning process.

We want our children to learn that “mistakes are okay”, they “help us learn”, “mistakes can be fixed” and“ if you need the help or support, an adult will be readily available”. If our children develop a willingness to persevere and the confidence to question and experiment, then the chance to them becoming lifelong learners is greatly increased! Through regular circle time, acts of collective worship and Awards Assemblies our children develop an awareness and understanding, firstly of themselves and secondly the cultures and viewpoints of others.

Our Key Stage 2 children work together as an elected Junior Board of Governors. They meet on a monthly basis to discuss issues of importance to the children, to plan for the future and to manage a playground equipment budget.

Through their time on the Junior Board of Governors they learn the skills of working as part of a committee, minute taking, making presentations, reaching consensus and many other important life skills. They also produce a termly newsletter called ‘Millennium Mirror’ which is coordinated by one of our Learning Support Assistants.

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RELIGIOUS EDUCATION

Children at Millennium represent Christian, other faiths and none. Our teaching recognises this
by fostering attitudes of respect and tolerance. Millennium Integrated follows the core Religious Education Programme agreed by the four main Christian Churches in Northern Ireland.

Through religious education, the children work together to understand their shared and differing religions and traditions in an atmosphere which is safe and caring.

Our Friday assembly is taken by clergy or lay ministers from the local churches. The children also have other opportunities to learn about major world traditions and faiths - especially during Integrated Education Week.

Our Roman Catholic children, whose parents wish them to be, are prepared for the Sacraments of Reconciliation, First Communion and Confirmation by experienced teachers and this is celebrated by the whole class.