The Springfields Academy

Reach South Academy Trust

Our central mission is for Reach South pupils to aspire to achieve beyond the expectations that others place on them.

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 Curriculum - The Big Ideas

Our Explorer curriculum enables pupils to develop a deep understanding of all subjects and the interconnections between them delivered through multi- sensory mediums and autism friendly enablement strategies. The rationale for the Explorer Curriculum takes the form of 10 big ideas that provide a purpose for the aspects, skills, knowledge and contexts chosen to form the substance of the curriculum. These big ideas form a series of multi-dimensional interconnected threads across the curriculum, allowing pupils to encounter and revisit their learning through a variety of subjects. Revisiting concepts in a variety of purposeful and concrete ways through the learning sequence enables our autistic learners to functionally apply concepts to a range of contexts. This purposeful skills acquisition enables each of our learners to lead a ‘safe independent life’ at their level of challenge.



Pupils find out what it means to be human, including the workings of human anatomy and how to keep safe. They discover the cause and effect of human behaviour and develop an understanding of the relationships between individuals, societies, faiths and communities.


Pupils explore the physics of force and movement and investigate the phenomena of electricity, light and sound. Through this big idea, children discover how physical processes such as weather and erosion can transform a place or landscape.                                                             


Pupils discover the place of everyday and exceptional creativity, including the qualities of persistence, determination, originality and resilience that form the basis of the creative process. Through this big idea, children develop an appreciation of the importance of experimentation, trial and error, original thought and self-expression.


Pupils understand the importance of asking questions, formulating hypotheses, gathering information and analysing evidence. Pupils start to think critically, make meaningful connections and reflect thoughtfully on evidence and ideas.


Understanding the unique and physical properties of all matter and how we interact with them. This big idea invites children to explore the properties of all matter, including that which is living and non-living. It explores how materials are both formed and change. Through this big idea, children develop an understanding of the uses of materials and their unique, physical properties that make them fit for purpose.


Pupils explore the characteristics and features of a range of habitats and study how living things interact within them. They examine the effects of economic and technological development on the natural world and consider the impact of human actions. Through this big idea, children discover the conditions needed for living things to thrive and survive.

Place and space

Pupils explore the visual, cultural, social, and environmental aspects of places in their locality and the wider world. They develop an appreciation of both the natural and urban landscape and begin to understand the bond between people and place or setting.


Understanding how and why things are the same or different. This big idea invites children to compare ways that things are the same or different. They identify simple and more complex patterns and make connections.


Understanding why significant people, places, events and inventions matter. This big idea invites children to explore the importance of significant people, places, events and inventions that have changed their everyday lives and the world at large.


Understanding why and how things have changed over time. They investigate and explore how events unfold and develop an understanding of timelines and chronology. Through this big idea, children begin to make meaningful connections between past, present and future and begin to appreciate the unique position of their place in time