It’s important that children see learning in a connected way. That they are able to make links between subjects and with the wider world. Many primary colleagues will know the frustration of teaching the children key skills in literacy and numeracy only to see them seemingly disappear when they begin to write a science report or similar. It is as if they cannot make the learning links and can only make use of these skills in the context in which they were first learned. Breaking that mould isn’t easy. Traditionally, learning in schools, as Guy Claxton says, has been situated, with children learning in one context or setting and not necessarily being able to transer this to other settings. I often think of this old radio clip which I found again recently on you tube as a way of illustrating the dangers of unconnected learning!
A topic or themed based approach can help children make connections and links, to see how learning in one area can be used successfully in another. This connected approach when coupled with a clear assessment system that enables pupil progress to be tracked can not only provide pupils with an exciting, relevant and flexible curriculum but also helps them to make important connections that will help them make sense of what they are learning and its place in the wider world.