How we’re supporting teaching and learning in our primary schools
Posted on by ALAT
Our new Teaching and Learning Lead, Simon Danby has been doing some fantastic work with our primary schools since joining in September, including working with our enthusiastic and talented teachers to develop tailored professional development to enhance their teaching and support progress.
This has been very productive, with all staff keen to action their ideas. On working with the schools, Simon says: “It’s been a thoroughly enjoyable experience so far, and inspirational to work with our senior leaders and principals on a day to day basis, assisting them with pushing through ideas to raise standards and move the schools forward.
“I will be spending quite a lot of time at Altarnun Primary School in Cornwall in the coming months, and have already started to look at developing the guided reading and phonics sessions there.”
Working for Adventure Learning Academy Trust (ALAT), Simon’s role is a bridge across the Trust’s primary schools and he has been sharing the good practice that takes place within each school amongst teaching staff and principals. Simon continues: “We are in the process of trialling a forum to encourage staff across the Trust to further share ideas and plan resources. The recent Maths Moderation Day was a great example of our schools working together and networking to share ideas and expertise, as well as to validate levels.”
Simon has spent considerable time developing the marking and feedback policies at Tywardreath School and Gulval School, working closely with the senior leadership teams, and has followed this up with planning and work scrutiny to raise standards and make sure that policies are followed correctly at staff meetings. Simon continues to support schools and is currently working with subject leaders so that they can monitor the books as effectively as possible and have confidence to review them independently.
At Tywardreath School, Simon was tasked with improving the learning environment and has given much more focus to teaching and learning in the staff room, and looking at how the school can improve and share what it does well. Simon talks us through his process for this: “Initially I worked with the Year 5 teacher, who was very responsive and made behaviour charts, role play areas and outdoor topic displays. This has worked particularly well and the staff at Tywardreath School are all taking this on board with classrooms and entrances of a high standard, geared towards stimulating and improving children’s topic work.
“Science is another area on which I have spent some time to improve within our schools, having the opportunity to work with teachers to raise the subject’s profile and make sure that it is covered effectively by staff in schools. It would be lovely to see some of our science trail park ideas come to fruition in the schools in the not too distant future – some of these are already starting to happen.”