How good is our school? A journey to excellence journeytoexcellence.org.uk
Our Journey Towards Excellence Jackie Alexander Principal Teacher Peel Primary School At Peel Primary School … E is not for excellent. It is for effort as we strive for excellence.
It is about how children learn, and the best ways of enabling them to learn. (HMIE) What is excellence? Striving for Excellence – what do we believe? Learning should be at the heart of everything we do. Without a continual focus on excellence, well never get there.
How good are we? Honestly? What is good about what we do and what needs to improve? How close are we to excellence? What do we need to do to get there? There are no shortcuts to excellence… (HMIE) Self-evaluation
Our journey so far… in learning and teaching with staff with pupils with parents
Learning and Teaching - Shaping the Curriculum Flexible Year Plan Teachers vision for the class, shared with the children Interdisciplinary Learning Grasping the opportunities of ACfE, using the 7 design principles to plan exciting, challenging contexts for learning. How do we create excitement, fun, magic moments and memories in learning? The Snowman P2/1
Learning and Teaching – Learning to Learn Learning without reflection is… like filling the bath without putting the plug in. (A.Smith) Learning to Learn tools used in every lesson Developing four part lessons connect, activate, demonstrate, reflect
Learning and Teaching – Developing Active Learning scrutinising what we do through action research measuring levels of engagement / involvement evolving practice - ongoing reviewing….refining….reviewing… Are our children actively engaged / involved in their learning?
ACfE 7 Design Principles: Personalisation and Choice Learning and Teaching – Integrating ICT How can we offer children choices and allow them to personalise their learning?
I am a child in your class, what have I experienced as a result of your CPD? Staff – Continually reviewing practice Staff gather evidence of IMPACT on learning and share with colleagues… photos, childrens work, own notes Home Teams – soon to gather evidence across the school in relation to a particular QI Interrogating our practice – allowing time to discuss excellence in learning and teaching Distributed leadership roles for all CAT sessions – ongoing CPD with learning and teaching as the focus
Finding benchmarks – using research and examples of best practice to guide us Professional reading (watching!) - HGIOS3, JtoExcellence site Staff – seeking examples of excellence How good are we? How good can we be?
Staff – Planning for Learning Thoughtful planning for learning is our top priority Quality Questions… what are my learning intentions? what impact will this lesson / theme have ? what are my success criteria? what strategies will I use to organise learning and why? how was the experience for the children? what was the feedback? how will I move forward? what are my next steps? What will be memorable about this lesson? Is this lesson worth behaving for?
Our Journey… with pupils Our school is excellent because there are lots of fun activities. Jack, P3
Pupils – What is their vision of excellence? What makes an excellent lesson / pupil / teacher / school? Our school is excellent because we have lots of computers and they help us to learn. Ellie, P3
How will you become excellent? – target setting and PLPs, consistent response codes, quality feedback Pupil Voice (Pupil Council) – Excellence Detectives looking for excellence in wall displays, use of learning to learn tools in classrooms and monitoring homework diaries Pupils – How will pupils identify excellence? Our school is excellent because we learn to make good choices about our behaviour. Joao, P7
Pupils – Learning Assemblies To launch new initiatives and reinforce excellence Our school is excellent because we treat each other fairly. Rebecca, P7 Never, never, never give up! Reach for the moon, even if you miss it you will land among the stars!
Weekly email from teacher to parents Learning events for parents - ACfE evening, Meet the Teacher event HT presentation at start of each session – vision for the school for that year Open door policy – two way communication, seeking views How do we engage parents in their childrens learning? Parents – communication and involvement
Excellence is the result of: caring more than others think is wise; risking more than others think is safe; dreaming more than others think is practical; and expecting more than others think is possible… …for our children (HMIE)