Year 2 Negotiated Curriculum

In Year 2, we continue our ‘Negotiated Curriculum’ approach, building on the learning that takes place in EY and Year 1.

In Year 2, we encourage the children to work with more independence, giving them ownership of their curriculum and providing opportunities for them to take their learning further. Children are encouraged to investigate, explore, ask questions and evaluate their work in order to help them deepen their understanding. They plan when and how they will complete their tasks within a set time and support one another when new challenges arise.


In Year 2, Read Write Inc., Maths and  English skills are taught discretely. Every other subject is taught through a negotiated curriculum, which is linked to a carefully chosen topic. Subject specific skills that children need in order to access certain subject areas, are taught directly before being presented in a negotiated way. Opportunities are created for children to experience learning in a meaningful and purposeful way, allowing them to develop the skills needed to become effective learners whilst developing their own time management.

Each day, children learn through either a whole class adult led activity, child-led investigation, or by choosing a ‘Rainbow Challenge.’ The learning environment consists of different areas both inside and outside the classroom, giving children the opportunity to work in a range of ways and with their peers.

The ‘Rainbow Challenge’ consists of independent activities initiated by the teacher (linked to curriculum coverage and progression) and the children (through ongoing discussion and during the planning stage.) They are linked to skills taught the previous week in order to give children the opportunity to deepen their understanding and consolidate their thinking. Children manage their own time, to ensure they have completed all activities on the ‘menu’ by the end of the two- weekly cycle. ‘Review time’ plays an important role in allowing children to become reflective learners, talking through their work and planning their own next steps. Children in Year 2 will also be introduced to a personal project of their choice. They will work on this alongside their menu and present back their work to the class, once they reach the end of their project.


Children in Year 2 have worked using a negotiated curriculum during their previous time in Year 1. They are involved within their learning as they have had the opportunity to give their ideas towards activities they want to focus on and the peers they can work with at that point in the day. As there are no restrictions on the areas they can use, the free movement gives children of different learning styles a more enabling environment.

Teachers retain a very tight control over the curriculum and outcomes for the children, through ongoing formative assessment of the children. This is done through both teacher led activities and by observing children in their work. Teachers are then able to set challenging targets, which are differentiated to the individual needs of the children. The inclusion of reading, writing and maths skills are an integral part of the negotiated curriculum as this gives children the opportunity to develop and use these skills on a daily basis, in addition to planned, focussed English and maths teaching. This helps the children to make links within their learning and view these skills as relevant to their own lives, with meaning and purpose.

At Kells Lane Primary School we strongly believe in the power of a growth mindset. We believe that ALL children have the ability to achieve what they want to achieve.

Everything we do encourages our children to understand that intelligence can be developed. Our pupils see school as a place to develop their abilities and think of challenges as opportunities to grow.

Watch this video clip if you’d like to find out more.

View Growth Mindset Series here

Gateshead RE syllabus

CLICK here to view the primary national curriculum in full