Forest Oak pupils (in Solihull) have been using their feelings during
the Coronavirus pandemic to create a song for everyone. The vocals in this song were recorded by pupils following safe guidelines. The photos in this video are of children working from home and of some of the changes made to the school. We hope you enjoy it.
This song can also be found on www.recoverycurriculum.org, alongside a podcast from the Executive Headteacher, Amanda Mordey, outlining their SMILE ethos based approach to emotional well being for their pupils and staff.
“There has never been a more crucial time to support our schools and equip our teachers, to build emotional resilience in our children & young people.The mental health of our children is eroding before our eyes, we need to bring back their SMILE. These are perfect resources for implementing a Recovery Curriculum.”
Professor Barry Carpenter, CBE, PhD. Professor of Mental Health in Education, Oxford Brookes University. (January 2020)
In this episode Professor Barry Carpenter interviews Beverley Cockbill, who has extensive experience of children with Complex Needs through her research and practice, especially in relation to the Engagement Model.
Bev describes how engagement is key to effective teaching and learning for this group of pupils, and how it provides a lens through which the teacher can guide the child to positive learning outcomes.
We hear from a leader in Special Education, Martin McKenna, currently Deputy Head of Palmerston School in Liverpool, and about to take up the Headship of Foxfield School on the Wirral.
Martin articulates his philosophy around interdisciplinary teamwork which has a shared focus on a personalised curriculum through a pedagogy rooted in Engagement. The Evidence for Learning app (EfL) is used to capture each pupil’s learning against their personalised goals.
In this episode the leadership and management of the Recovery Curriculum is discussed by the Senior Leadership Team of Whitfield Aspen School, a primary school in Dover.
This is a unique, inclusive primary school with over 300 pupils, and over 130 in the resourced provision for children with severe and profound learning difficulties. The discussion focuses on the leadership challenges the SLT are experiencing, between Jason Cook, the Executive Headteacher, and the two Heads of School, Ali Erskine and Anne Mason and some of the ideas and steps that the school has already been taken to commence the recovery process.
In this episode Vijita Patel considers the strategic implementation of the Recovery Curriculum for her school, Swiss Cottage School, Development & Research Centre in London. She does this from a stance of compassionate leadership, with a clear focus on engagement in learning.
Her penetrating analysis shows how child need should inform organisational judgements, and that a constant focus should be the emotional well being of the child. A mutually respectful relationship with families as co educators, is vital at this time she says.
‘International evidence is clear that using picture books in primary schools post-disaster is an important and useful pedagogical tool. The picture books we have selected provide opportunities to discuss significant issues from living in lockdown and what the return to school means, to the fears and worries children might now have about the future.’
In conversation, Barry and Matthew reflected on the origins of the Think Piece, and Matthew, who is Principal at Baxter College, a mainstream secondary school, shares his thinking behind the 5 levers and how he and his team are applying them to plan the recovery process at Baxter College.
Reflecting on each of the 5 levers, Mat talks about the importance of ‘nimble leadership’ and being responsive to the individual needs of the whole school community in co-constructing the post pandemic curriculum, ensuring transparency throughout the journey.
The prolific Dr Tina Rae, is offering series of Coffee Time chats on youtube. This second in her series covers the really important issue of Anxiety, which will be a major emotional well being factor for many children, during and post pandemic.
The are easy to listen too, packed with information, and refreshingly practical. Highly recommended.