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Life Lessons (PSHE/RHSE/SMSC)

Life Lessons

Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education

Relationships and Health Education


Our Life Lessons Intent

Our Life Lessons scheme of work aims to equip the children at Birkdale Primary with the essential skills for life; it aims to nurture the whole child through carefully planned and resourced lessons that develop the knowledgeskills and attributes that children need to manage many of the critical choices, opportunities, challenges and responsibilities they will face as they grow up and in adulthood.

By teaching pupils about the world around them, how to stay safe and healthy, how to build self-esteemresilience and empathy, and by exposing them to the diversity of modern day Britain, our Life Lessons can tackle barriers to learning, raise aspirations, and ensure that children are equipped with the skills and information they need to actively and responsibly participate in their communities.

Our Life Lessons Unit of Work

The scheme we follow for Life Lessons is completely bespoke.

It was created by the subject leader based on the following governments requirements:

The PSHE Curriculum (2020)

Relationships Education (2020)

Health Education (2020)

Social, Moral, Spiritual and Cultural awareness (SMSC) - (2014)

An understanding of British Values in modern Britain - (2014)

as well as non-statutory guidance and advice from The PSHE Association schemes of work.

Once the essential objectives were in place, parent, staff and pupil surveys were used to gather ideas for the rest of the content of our scheme. The final version was agreed upon by the Headteacher and the Governing Body.

In the autumn term of each year, parents, staff and pupils are given the opportunity to review the scheme of work and make any suggestions for the future development of the subject.

How we deliver Life Lessons


Nursery and Reception children follow a bespoke curriculum based on the Development Matters 2020 guidelines. These guidelines include a wide range of personal, social and emotional development milestones that children are guided to meet throughout their time in EYFS. The content of this PSED curriculum is structured in a similar way to the rest of the school's Life Lessons curriculum, following the same themes, but learning is revisited on a regular (sometimes daily) basis rather than in weekly lessons. 

Year 1 - Year 6

From Year 1 - Year 6, children are taught Life Lessons across six themed units of work:

Autumn 1 - Good To Be Me!

Autumn 2 - Being Healthy

Spring 1 - Working Together

Spring 2 - Good Relationships

Summer 1 - Global Neighbours

Summer 2 - The Future is Bright

Each lesson focuses on teaching the relevant skills, understanding and vocabulary of the theme, whilst continually encouraging the children to consider how they perceive themselves, their family and friends and the wider world around them. Lessons are weekly and build on from the previous year's learning in teach theme, in an age-appropriate way.

Children are initially given the opportunity to share and consider their knowledge and understanding of each lesson objective before taking part in range of practical activities and class discussions to explore the theme further. It is critical that each new skill or new vocabulary being taught is not only put into the context of classroom learning and school-life experiences, but also into the context of the child's wider life experiences, including (where relevant) how this may be needed in the future.

Below, you will find the overviews for each of our units of work and will be able to see what is covered in the units for each year group. 

What do our pupils think of Life Lessons?

Pupil Voice gives us a valuable insight into what the children learn from Life Lessons, how they perceive the relevance of the lessons to their daily and future lives and is also a way of identifying what they feel they would like to learn for their own development. 

Please have a look at some of the responses from our most recent Pupil Voice for Life Lessons!

Meet our Life Lessons Ambassador!


Some examples of our work...


Below you will find the expectations of what children should know, understand and put into practice in the different areas of our Life Lessons curriculum. Children are assessed by their class teacher based on these expectations but for the sole purpose of identifying children that may need some additional support in understanding certain objectives, or in learning to develop particular social or emotional skills.