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☰ The importance of not sitting still

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Headteacher Blog

The importance of not sitting still

Posted on: 28 Feb 2019 by Weston Green School

It is often said that change is a given in the world of education. In the most innovative schools, change is embedded in their culture; they are places that constantly evaluate and reflect on their practice and provision in order to provide the very best of opportunities, where innovation is part of teaching and learning and where change is an opportunity to improve. It is important that schools do this and continue to reflect on how and what they are offering. The best schools do not sit still. We owe it to our children to develop and improve, for we are preparing them for an unknown world, for roles and careers that have not been invented yet; it is important we stay ahead and continue to evolve.

A core part of this is our School Progress Plan. Those of you I met at my presentation ‘The Way Ahead’ at the beginning of the school year will recall that our focus this year is on three key areas which have been identified through thorough self-evaluation, the results of parental, staff and pupil questionnaires and external evaluation through our work with Bellevue. These key areas represent the core of our work within school this year.

Through teaching and learning, we have been focusing on the development of learning dialogue within the classroom, where children have a clear understanding of what they are learning, how well they are doing and what they need to learn next. Your child may come home talking of ‘Steps to Success’, which is our new language for describing the learning steps needed to be successful in any lesson and to achieve well.

The introduction of Chromebooks has been powerful in supporting the collaboration of learning. Sharing documents, working together, saving and organising work in the cloud has been an impactful way of engaging children in learning across the curriculum. Staff too have been trained and are developing how Chromebooks and ‘Google Classrooms’ can be utilised both for themselves professionally and to enhance learning and communication beyond school. You can watch a video of some of our Year 6 pupils talking about the benefits of Chromebooks here.

Through our focus on English development, we have worked to develop tools for pupils to support their writing in all subject areas, such as reminder cards for key skills, punctuation, spelling and grammar techniques. The introduction of ‘Big Write’ journals enables children to write more at length and demonstrate the technical skills they have learnt. There is an increased emphasis on the use of rich texts to engage and motivate learners, exposing children to different types of text, authors and genres and so enhancing their understanding of language. Pupils in all year groups are also benefitting from increased opportunities to write creatively, stimulated by improved opportunities for shared writing and using techniques such as ‘talk for writing’ championed by Pie Corbett. Our School Project this year, 'Tell me a story…,' has a creative writing focus to support this.

Our School Progress Plan priorities provide a focus for improvement and help us to continually evaluate and develop what we do, to enable our school to continue to offer the highest quality of opportunities for our pupils. We invite you to view the updated School Developments page of our website, which details each of our priorities and will be kept up to date with examples of progress in each area and the impact this is having on our pupils' experiences. Do take a look!  

Mrs. Evans

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