Our Approach to Teaching, Learning and Assessment
At Ravensbury Community School, we believe all our pupils can achieve their very best. We believe they will soar! Lessons are stimulating and pacy and pupils are active in making decisions about how and what they are learning.
Lessons and the curriculum are designed to expect pupils to secure their year group’s learning and to have plenty of opportunities to deepen and stretch that learning. We plan so our pupils can make meaningful and exciting connections between their experiences and agrowing understanding of the world we live in. We build upon what we believe is a natural curiosity to question, explore and make sense of the world and each other. Our teaching and learning is ACTIVE, COLLABORATIVE and COGNITIVE.
We have established key principles which we whole heartedly and unanimously believe enable all pupils to learn as effectively as possible and enable each teacher to teach and assess as effectively as possible. The teaching staff are passionate about teaching; modelling and monitoring learning continually with high expectations for each and evry pupil.
Our principles are non- negotiable and underpin all our Teaching and learning policies. How they are then translated into to practice is varied, dynamic and individual and will reflect the expertise and creativity of the teaching staff in our school.
At Ravensbury Community School, we believe that the best learning takes place when:
- Pupils are empowered to develop skills of autonomy and independence. We consistently develop,from a very young age, their skills, attitudes and habits as effective learners. Our pupils are taught to understand how they are learning and we have embedded our own pupil friendly approach to securing skills and how to then deepen this learning through practice and application.
- Pupils learn best when learning is purposeful and task based and reflects the principles of creativity (invention, imagination and communication). Our activities foster curiosity and enthusiasm for learning. We ensure that all our learning offers opportunities for collaboration.
- Pupils are carefully and appropriately challenged. Our pupils want to be challenged and our staff ensure they always are.
- Pupils learn best when teaching reflects four key aspects of highly effective learning – Feedback, Autonomy, Challenge and Engagement.
- Pupils learn best when assessment feeds back into teaching. This principle is within each and every lesson, across sequences of lessons and across each yearly programme of study. There is provision for support, repetition and extension of learning for each child, at each starting point of learning.
- Pupils learn best when the learning environment is ordered, the atmosphere is purposeful and children feel safe and emotionally ready for learning.
- Pupils learn best when there is a strong link between home and school where pupils’ Home Learning activities are purposeful, effective and contribute to their progress.
A mastery curriculum
At Ravensbury, we approach all learning with the belief that ALL pupils can understand a particular concept or skill or achieve an expected standard. Some pupils are capable of going beyond. Our curriculum is designed to ensure that no pupils are left un challenged. All pupils are taught the objectives for the National Curriculum for each subject for their particular year group. Lesson ensure that all pupils secure, or master, these objectives so that they are:
- flexible (seen and used in different contexts, different representations)
- committed to the long term memory (as a result of practice and use)
- secure so the learner can reason with it and apply it to solve problems
Pupils spend time becoming true masters of content and applying and being creative with new knowledge and skills in multiple ways. Learning is taken at a steadier and deeper pace, ensuring that no child is left behind, as well as providing deeper and richer experiences for children who are very capable of deepening their learning even more and achieving higher than the national expectation for their age group.
We do this by making sure that:
- Teachers plan lessons and weekly sequences to develop detail and depth.
- Lessons have excellent pupil support through feedback and speedy interventions to make sure that all pupils are keeping up on a daily basis.
- That all lessons allow pupils to make decisions about their learning and have opportunities to be extended and challenged further and more deeply.
- That pupils have the space and time to understand, practice, apply and experience their learning.
- That all learning opportunities ask all pupils to be active, collaborative and cognitive.
- All pupils are entitled to additional support to ensure that they do not fall behind or if they are capable of going deeper.
- Learning has resources that support all children to make progress from initial understanding through to deeper learning and application- both within school and at home.
We assess in broadly two ways:
- On a daily, on going basis. This is important for teaching and learning as it tells both teachers and pupils how they are progressing through a particular lesson, or group of lessons. Teachers feedback and assess continually as they teach so that they can slow fdown or speed up, challenge or repeat as necessary. NOW feedback in lessons means that pupils’ learning needs are met quickly and effectively. Pupils themselves assess continuously and are active in choosing whether to continue to practice, or to move onto the next depth.
We also assess how the pupils are progressing through the programme of study for their year group. We do this at 4 points throughout the year: at the end of Autumn 1 term, the end of Autumn 2 term, the Spring term and the Summer term. Y2 and Y6 sit the national SATs tests in the Summer term. The teacher judgements at these assessment point are based on progress tests and work in pupils’books. Our tracking system then records all pupils’ attainment and progress. This helps the teachers and leadership to ensure that we have a consistently clear and accurate picture of how our pupils are learning and progressing. We can compare this to the national picture.