Every child and family who joins our setting will have their own knowledge and experiences that will link to their culture and wider family. This might include: languages, beliefs, traditions, cultural and family heritage, interests, travel and work.
Research shows that when children and families’ cultures are valued, both the child’s experience of learning and progress can benefit.
Cultural capital is the accumulation of knowledge, behaviours, and skills that a child can draw upon and which demonstrates their cultural awareness, knowledge and competence; it is one of the key ingredients a pupil will draw upon to be successful in society, their career and the world of work.
Cultural capital gives power. It helps children achieve goals, become successful, and rise up the social ladder without necessarily having wealth or financial capital. Cultural capital is having assets that give children the desire to aspire and achieve social mobility whatever their starting point.
At St. Wulstan’s, children benefit from a flexible curriculum that builds on what they understand and know already. We believe that exposure, not only to culture but also to situations in which the children might not have previous experiences of, is of paramount importance to their ongoing successes.
Gradually widening children’s experiences as they progress through school is an important step in providing rich and engaging learning across the curriculum. We plan carefully for children to have progressively richer experiences in Reception and beyond. These include trips to the local park, shops and visits to places of worship, museums, sports and music venues just to name a few.
Building experiences and knowledge by immersing children in the world around them is done by thinking about people around the world; appreciating and loving music; understanding how history has shaped our future; celebrating different cultures, traditions and faiths; educational visits linked to our topics; learning about people in our community;having our say about Road Safety; planning and running charity events; showcasing talents; learning beyond the classroom; supporting our local community; learning about animal welfare and much more!
What is Cultural Capital?
Cultural capital is the accumulation of knowledge, behaviours, and skills that a child can draw upon and which demonstrates their cultural awareness, knowledge and competence; it is one of the key ingredients a child will draw upon to be successful in society, their career and the world of work.
Cultural capital promotes social mobility and success.
Cultural capital gives a child power. It helps them achieve goals, become successful, and rise up the social ladder without necessarily having wealth or financial capital.
Cultural capital is having assets that give children the desire to aspire and achieve social mobility whatever their starting point.
At St. Wulstan’s, we recognise that for children to aspire and be successful academically and in the wider areas of their lives, they need to be given rich and sustained opportunities to develop their cultural capital.
The school recognises that there are six key areas of development that are interrelated and cumulatively contribute to the sum of a child’s cultural capital:
- Personal Development
- Social Development, including political and current affairs awareness
- Physical Development
- Spiritual Development
- Moral Development
- Cultural development
When we returned to school in September 2020, each class was given the challenge of choosing a person who had overcome adversity and challenge in their lives to become their class inspiration and mascot. Reception selected the astronaut, Tim Peake and Year 1 chose Mother Theresa for helping to overcome poverty and helping the destitute in India. Year 2 picked J K Rowling for her determination to tell the world the magical stories of Harry Potter. Year 3/4 chose Helen Kellar for overcoming deaf and blindness to go to university and help others. Year 4/5 voted for Rosa Parks for invigorating the struggle for racial equality. Year 5/6 selected Martin Luther King for his work towards ending the segregation of black and white people in America. Inspirational role models for the children, and us all, to follow. In 2021, each class has adopted a Saint as an inspirational role model: Mother Theresa, St. Oswald, St. Francis of Assisi, Joan of Arc to name a few.
Summary of the key areas of coverage for each area of Cultural Capital Development and some examples of how children’s development is shown in the areas:
- Citizenship, Personal, Social and Health Education provision
- The school’s wider pastoral framework
- Growth mindset support – resilience development strategies
- Transition support
- Work to develop confidence e.g. role play, supporting peers
- Activities focused on building self-esteem
- Mental Health & well-being provision
- Nurture provision
- Personal, Social and Health Education provision
- Volunteering and charitable work
- Pupil Voice
- Support from St. Wulstan’s Home School Liaison Officer
- Pastoral support from all staff
- Nurture provision
- Current affairs topics
- Mums, Me and Tea, Dads, Me and Tea
- Parent workshops
- School council
- Choir visits to the elderly
- House captains
- Peer Mediators
- Sports clubs
- The Physical Education curriculum
- Healthy Eating policies and catering provision
- Anti-bullying and safeguarding policies and strategies
- The Health Education dimension of the PSHE programme, including strands on drugs, smoking and alcohol
- The extra-curricular clubs related to sports and well-being
- The celebration of sporting achievement including personal fitness and competitive sport
- Activity-based residential visits
- Design and Technology units related to food preparation and nutrition
- The Religious Education Curriculum – see our RE pages
- Our collective acts of reflection
- Support for the expression of individual faiths
- The Religious Education Curriculum
- School vision and aims
- Awards Assemblies
- The school’s Behaviour policy: dojos, Wulstan Wonder Points, class points/table points, reward charts
- Seeds and Gardeners
- St. Wulstan’s school website
- Contributions to local, national and international charitable projects
- Pupil voice: the School Council, GIFT Team, Reading Ambassadors, Playground Pals, Eco Team
- Understanding cause and effect, making the right choices
- Nurture provision
- Citizenship education through PSHE
- Arts education including Music and Drama
- Access to the languages and cultures of other countries through the Geography and MFL curriculum
- Promotion of racial equality and community cohesion through the school’s ethos, informing all policy and practice
- Window on the World Days (to date we have 'visited' India, America, South Africa and Brazil)
- Charity events
- Shakespeare Week, World Book Day
- Appreciating artists – Arts Week
Window on the World Days: Brazil, America, France, Poland, South Africa, India...to name but a few!
On Friday 2nd October, Brazil came to St. Wulstan’s! The whole school spent the day learning about the rich culture and history of Brazil and even managed to fit in some time salsa dancing with a specialist dance teacher. Arts and crafts were everywhere as we made flags, carnival hats and masks, parrot trees, carnival carts and clay models of Sugarloaf Mountain. Chocolate Brazilian food delicacies were on offer in Year 2 and Year 5/6 carried out some fabulous research comparing children’s lives in Brazil to their own lives in England. A great day was had by all!
Summer 2021 saw the arrival of all things Polish at St. Wulstan's. We had a wonderful day learning Polish dancing and all about the history of Poland. We welcomed Polish visitors into school who shared stories of their live in Poland and talked with the children about their home country.
Autumn 2021saw the children learning about the famous monuments in France and the rich and extensive culture of Paris. In addition to speaking French for most of the day, we welcome a French dance teacher into school and the children really enjoying learning some new moves.
Each curriculum area makes its own contribution to children’s cultural capital development and supports SMSC across the school.