A Rediscovery Curriculum at Gillingstool Primary School
At Gillingstool we aim to work in partnership with our parents and the wider community, to provide a unique environment within a vibrant and caring school – inspiring our children’s passion for ambitious, life-long learning.
The coronavirus pandemic has impacted everyone across the world and the effect on Gillingstool pupils, parents and school staff has not been insignificant. With this in mind when we return in September, we will need to focus on the challenges we have faced and seek opportunities for supporting all members of our school community as we return to the ‘new normal’ approach to learning.
We need to help our children ‘REDISCOVER’ the joy of learning, alongside their friends, at school.
During the partial lockdown our school staff worked with children both at school and at home. We have supported the home-schooled pupils through the use of distance learning packs, doorstep visits, regular phone calls, video-link sessions and shared virtual story time.
All pupils now need the return of routine and structure that will enable them to move forward and progress in their learning. It is inevitable that there will be gaps in pupils’ understanding, knowledge and personal development as a result of being away from school for such a long period of time.
When the pupils return to school in September they will experience a ‘Rediscovery Curriculum’. This will comprise of learning and activities focused around wellbeing and mental health as well as a planned ‘catch up’ of learning lost over time. Pupils will need to revisit prior learning, understand what they are doing now and what is coming next.
Our ‘Rediscovery Curriculum’ will be based on the 5 levers created by Professor Barry Carpenter – A Recovery Curriculum: Loss and Life for our pupils and schools post pandemic.’ Professor Barry Carpenter 2020
Relationships – we will ensure that pupils are given the time and space to re-establish relationships with their classmates and staff within school.
Community – we will listen to families to find out how well the pupils have coped with the past few months but also work together to identify where further support is required. We will re-engage with all members of our school community to ensure a happy return to school with continuity and progression in learning.
Transparent Curriculum – we will ensure that our learning, personal development and wellbeing activities engage all pupils and develop their understanding further. Pupils will know what to expect during a school day, what is happening ‘now’ and ‘next’.
Metacognition – we will ensure that the pupils have clear routines and offer appropriate ‘catch up’ required to have them back on track to where they were before the closures. We will ensure that all pupils are challenged and supported to reach their full potential. We will support them in rediscovering their stamina and resilience.
Space – we will ensure all pupils have a voice, the space and opportunities to express themselves creatively.
Gillingstool Primary School will seek to address these areas by a focus on –
Celebration and Belonging
We will celebrate our return as a school community. We will recognise the efforts of those who looked after us during lockdown and reflect upon our wishes for the future now that we have returned to school. There will be a reconnection as unit as we rediscover a sense of belonging to our school community and sense of identity together.
Oracy and Reading
We will use high quality texts to stimulate pupils’ feelings and opinions and support children how to articulate their thoughts. The development of vocabulary will be key for pupils to share these feelings and deepen their understanding. The use of vocabulary will improve pupils’ confidence in developing their ability to ‘catch up’ and make progress in their overall learning.
To support the pupils’ physical development there will be an emphasis on outside learning and physical activity. This activity will be carried out across the curriculum whenever possible and in PE. There will be plenty of active learning from concrete, first hand experiences moving back into the abstract.
Both of these aspects of the curriculum will be developed to ensure pupils also re-engage with their core learning. Teachers will assess and plan reconnection learning experiences to ensure pupils make the progress that they should. Pupils will rediscover their understanding of concepts and build on what has been learnt during school closure.