Colne Valley Consortium: Day 2 Stanley Drapkin School, Steeple Bumpstead

| March 1, 2011 | 4 Comments 

Following yesterday’s training day at The Stoke by Nayland Hotel with the Colne Valley Consortium schools, we are today at   Stanley Drapkin Primary School,  in Steeple Bumpstead, working with pupils and teachers exploring some of yesterday’s ideas.

The school is situated in a village on the Essex and Suffolk border. The village of Steeple Bumpstead has boasted its own school for many hundreds of years. The very first school was housed in the upper floor of The Moot Hall. A fascinating history, and an exciting future. But, a fantastic and inspiring PRESENT: A focus on quality and inventive learning. My favourite quote (of many) around the school is “Are we preparing for a life of tests, or the tests of life?)

Stanley Drapkin is a forest school so it was great to wander into a huge, dripping rainforest …of words!

Our day started with over 60 Year 3 and Year 4’s in the hall with their teachers and visiting colleagues from the other Colne Valley Consortium schools.

Thank you to Mary Nicholls, Headteacher from Stanley Drapkin Primary School, for her thoughts:

‘It has been interesting, intriguing and amazing to see how the activities we were told about and took part in at the conference were then put into practice with our pupils. The sessions engaged our most reluctant writers as well as opening up the imaginations of our more able. The strong emphasis on talk engages all in a non-threatening way – there are no right answers and no wrong answers! Above all, the teaching skills that we have been fortunate to share with Tim has reinforced the benefit that learning has to be fun.

Just one last question –  Is Mr Walker a magic flute?’ (That would be telling! 😉 )

Year 1 and Year 2’s showed some superb inventive minds, creating a huge variety of objects, creatures and landscapes just beyond our view. We didn’t neeeeed to see them “for real”. Their words brought them alive in our heads!

Rachel Warr, Foundation Class Teacher, Stanley Drapkin Primary School:

I was in a Year 3 and 4 session this morning and it was absolutely fantastic!  I came away feeling very inspired and so did the children.  The format of the session felt informal and I think that is why the children felt able to contribute without feeling inhibited.  Tim used the children’s ideas and gave the impression that all ideas came from them, using their suggestions as the basis for their learning.  Even the most reluctant writers were busy writing similes and metaphors after Tim’s inspirational input.  I will definitely use some of Tim’s strategies in my teaching and make greater use of ICT as a stimulus for learning.  Thank you!

Year 5 and Year 6’s produced some excellent descriptive narrative, and a trio of explorers gave us a real treat, acting out the horrific events that left them stranded on the island we discovered ourselves upon. Glorious imaginative wittering.

Thank you all over the last two days for some excellent, fun, and fulfilling explorations. Onwards!

Category: 1) Events and Training days

Comments (4)

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  1. Jane F says:

    Thank you Tim for such a brilliant morning at Stanley Drapkin. It was totally inspiring, and I was able to relate to the children in the hall to those in my class. I am ready to get going with Myst in my school and feel quite excited about it. New ideas, and especially those demonstrated with children, are a real motivator to teachers. Yesterday atthe consortium day I went home and spent ages seaching web sites and playing around with ideas! A wonderful two days! Thank you also to Sarah for her patience and clear explanations!

  2. Stuart White says:

    Hi – Thanks for a 360 degree inspiring afternoon … of which ICT was just a part! It’s always a wonderful welcome opportunity to be able to let the senses do some soaking up while the grey matter ticks and whirs, reflecting and processing on how learning can be tweaked and made more fun for the children … and of course, me, too! In the meantime, I look forward to watching the ‘to baldy go’ 30 minute video and then hoping that after a few hours of nervous waiting, my eBay bid on Myst III comes good!! Finally, yes, our school is all about preparing for tests of life … well spotted!

  3. Danielle O'Connell says:

    A really inspiring and insightful morning! It was brilliant to see the children so animated and engaged in their learning. I’ve already downloaded many of the fantastic resources you recommended, spent far too long exploring Myst and now can’t wait to get back into the classroom to try it all out. Thank you!

  4. Mary Nicholls says:

    Thanks Tim and Sarah for such inspiring 2 days that will, I’m sure, become many more days in our school. Even as I walked around the school this morning I could feel your influence has impacted already just in the way lessons were being delivered – less hands up, more dialogue between the pupils and LOTs of eyebrows! Can’t wait for the day when I go around the school only to truly believe that I am in the land of Myst or another magical and ‘writingical’ inspiring place!

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