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social, moral & spiritual education (SMSC)

With the pandemic, inevitably some of the events/ activities listed below have had to be altered or simply not done. However, this page gives a good indication of what we aim to normally achieve.


A major part of any School's curriculum is how we promote Spritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Education. At Orchard we believe this can be taught both implicitly and explicitly. It is at the heart of everything we believe a school should "be about" as it plays such a significant part in children's learning and ability to achieve.


We therefore aim to provide an education that provides children with opportunities to explore and develop:

  • their own values and beliefs

  • their own spiritual awareness;

  • their own high standards of personal behaviour;

  • a positive, caring attitude towards other people;

  • an understanding of their social and cultural traditions; and

  • an appreciation of the diversity and richness of their cultures.


Whilst many of the aspects of SMSC are covered in ‘just the way we are’, we consciously facilitate opportunities in these four areas in the following ways:

SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: refers to a pupil’s progressive acquisition of the competencies and qualities needed to play a full part in society. This is supported by:

  • Fostering a sense of community with common, inclusive values (Assembly; Home-School Agreement; ‘PTFA’ events including Christmas & Summer fairs; involvement with community arts projects; partnership with local churches & mosque; Year Group, Class and sometimes individual pupil/ staff projects).

  • Promoting racial, religious and other forms of equality (Racial & Equal opportunities policies).

  • Encouraging children to work co-operatively (PDL, RRR, Year 2/3 Buddies, House system; mixed year group curriculum events, Sports Day).

  • Encouraging children to recognise and respect social differences and similarities; for example, where they live, different kinds of family models, age issues (RE; literature; PSHE).

  • Providing positive corporate experiences; for example, special curriculum events, productions, school council, “Orchard’s Got Talent”, Class Assemblies.

  • Helping pupils develop personal qualities which are valued in society, for example, thoughtfulness, honesty, respect for differences, moral principles, independence, inter-dependence, self-respect.

  • Helping children to relieve tensions between their own aspirations and those of the wider group (Emotional Literacy Support Assistants - ELSAs).

  • Providing opportunities to participate in the democratic process and participate in making community decisions (School Council; votes in class on a variety of issues; House Captain votes).

  • Providing children with opportunities to exercise leadership and responsibility (School Councilors, Class monitors; House Captains; Pupil librarians; Digital Leaders; PE Monitors).

  • Welcoming members of the wider community into our school and participating in events at other venues  (parents invited to Celebration Assemblies, Class Assemblies, other Year events such as open afternoons; Links with Infant feeder (particularly Orchard Infants); links with Secondary feeders (STEM, Sports Leaders; singing at local care homes).

  • Celebrating our success in the wider community (Website; newsletter; local media, including newspapers and TV; notice boards; sports tournaments; music competitions).



MORAL DEVELOPMENT: refers to a pupil’s understanding, attitude and behaviour to what is right and what is wrong. This is developed by:

  • Providing a clear moral code for behaviour which is promoted consistently through all aspects of the school; for example, Behaviour Policy; Class Charters; Anti Bullying Week, E-Safety lessons.

  • Promoting racial, religious and other forms of equality (Racial, Inclusion, Equal Opportunities, SEN policies).

  • Giving pupils opportunities to explore and develop moral concepts and values throughout the curriculum; for example, truth, justice, equality of opportunity, right and wrong (PDL; RE; History; Literacy; Assembly; Drama; School Council; Community Police officer visits).

  • Developing an open and safe learning environment in which pupils can express their views and practise moral decision making (School Council; Drama/ Role-play; Safeguarding policy & practice).

  • Rewarding expressions of moral insights and good behaviour (Celebration Assembly; class reward systems; house points).

  • Modelling through the quality of relationships and interactions the principles we wish to promote; for example, fairness, integrity, respect for persons, pupil welfare, respect for minority interests, resolution of conflict keeping promises and contracts (whole school or year group charity events; Celebration Assemblies; Assembly themes).

  • Recognising and respecting different cultural groups represented in the school and the wider community (celebration of religious festivals in RE and assemblies, use of flag pole).

  • Encouraging children to take responsibility for their actions; for example, respect for property, care of the environment and code of behaviour (Behaviour Policy; Assembly themes).

  • Providing models of moral standards through the curriculum (Literacy; History; RE; PSHE; Assembly; Drama).

  • Reinforcing the school’s values through the use of posters, displays etc. (Orchard Values Tree – “Growing Together. Branching Out.”; school council and house points display; sports notice board; rights and responsibilities in each classroom).


SPIRITUAL DEVELOPMENT: This refers to children’s beliefs, religious or otherwise, which inform their perspective on life and their interest in, and respect for, different people’s feelings and values. This is developed by:

  • Giving pupils the opportunity to explore values and beliefs, including religious beliefs and the way in which they impact on people’s lives. This is done, for example, through Assemblies, PDL planning, Rights and Responsibilities and History.

  • Giving pupils the opportunity to understand human emotions and feelings, the way they impact on people and how an understanding of them can be helpful; for example, through Literacy and Drama, Music and Dance.

  • Developing a climate, or ethos, within which all pupils can grow and flourish, respect others and be respected; for example,  School Council; Celebration Assemblies; Star of the Week; Music Awards, Year 6 awards.

  • Offering pupils the opportunity to appreciate the beauty and wonder of the natural environment; for example, frequent visits to the local New Forest National Park, Year 6 residential to Castleton in the Peak District, visit to Lepe coastline.

  • Accommodating difference and respecting the integrity of individuals; for example, Rights and Responsibilities, School Council, Assemblies, PDL.

  • Promoting teaching styles that:

    • Value pupil questions and give them space for their own thoughts, ideas and concerns.

    • Enable pupils to make connections between aspects of their learning.

    • Encourage pupils to relate their learning to a wider frame of reference; for example, asking ‘why’, ‘how’, and ‘where’ as well as ‘what’.


CULTURAL DEVELOPMENT: refers to pupils developing their understanding of beliefs, values and customs in social, ethnic and national groups different to their own. This is supported by:

  • Providing children with opportunities to explore their own cultural assumptions and values.

  • Celebrating the attitudes, values and traditions of diverse cultures (Geography; RE; History; Literacy; Library; Assembly; Art; Dance; Music; e.g. African Dance in Year 3 and Indian Dance/ food in Year 4)

  • Recognising and nurturing particular gifts and talents (Local Events with other schools, sports fixtures and tournaments, Quiz competition (regional finalists).

  • Developing partnerships with outside agencies and individuals to extend pupil’s cultural awareness (Drama, music and dance groups).

  • Reinforcing the school’s cultural values through displays and photographs.

  • Using ICT and the world-wide web to extend partnerships with those from other cultural backgrounds (links with other schools).

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