St. Woolos Primary School, Newport II

| October 16, 2009 | 1 Comment 

We were joined, today,  by Helen Bowen, Curriculum Improvement Adviser for English/Literacy for Newport, and she kindly recorded her reflections on the morning.

Helen BowenI have had the pleasure of seeing Tim and Sarah presenting at conferences a few time now…but today was the first time I have seen them work their magic with children.

Was there writing? Yes there was, but there was such a build up to it that the pupils were so ‘warmed up’ that the process of making marks on paper was virtually effortless. The ‘what to write’ had been taken away! The importance of Oral rehearsal before writing was at the heart of this.

We are in a fortunate position in Wales where our Curriculum is providing us with the chance to look for opportunities for rich task setting. What I have seen today encapsulates creativity perfectly, but also managed to build in a good dollop of basic skills development in context. What a day!

I will try to capture the essence of what was achieved with Y1/2  and Y4/5/6 children in a school in Wales in a few short phrases:
stwoolos collage Engagement using a visual stimulus (a statutory element of our Curriculum for English!).
• Opportunities for meaningful speaking and listening (to Tim, to each other to someone who they might not normally speak to).
• Rich task setting and problem solving.
• Exposure to rich language and a high expectation that they can ‘play with vocabulary’.
• All pupils’ ideas felt valued as there were no right or wrong answers.

There was so much enthusiasm and engagement that the pupils (and teachers who were observing the session) smiled throughout and were not even aware that they were learning!

Category: 1) Events and Training days

Comments (1)

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  1. Liz says:

    Thoroughly enjoyed the day. It was a few hours of escapism with some intense learning going on at the same time! Loved it!

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