GGS Tower

Teaching & Learning

Introduction

At Grafham Grange School we believe in the concept of lifelong learning and the idea that both adults and children learn new things every day. Learning should be a rewarding and enjoyable experience for everyone; it should be fun. Through our teaching we equip children with the skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to be able to make informed choices about the important things in their lives. We believe that appropriate teaching and learning experiences help children to lead happy and rewarding lives.

The most crucial factor for achieving progress and success with our students is the empathy and deep skills base of staff, insistence on high standards and consistency of approach which enables learning to take place. Consistency is achieved through having a shared approach, careful planning and a focus on expertise for each individual professional. The collaborative process involves education, residential and multi-disciplinary teams working together with specialists and parents / carers to ensure consistency.

All students will possess a Personalised Learning Plan (PLP) that will be rigorously scrutinised to maximise and accelerate social and academic progress.

At Key Stage 3 this means building on the opportunities offered in the school's physical context:

  • enabling the young people to follow creative, thematic, aesthetic programmes of study in an outdoor context.
  • bringing together their understanding of themselves in a place and how it affects them, their perception of the world around them - using the site and local community.
  • applying and building a practical understanding of the Key Stage 3 curriculum through themed activities and learning events (days/weeks), plus off site pre-14 Vocational options.
  • an expectation of being involved in adventurous/personally challenging activity.
  • SMSC delivery through curriculum days.
  • All areas will be underpinned by 21st Century Digital Literacy and Technologies opportunities.

At Key stage 4 this means being able to:

  • undertake extended coursework opportunities, applying acquired knowledge and understanding.
  • the opportunity to undertake enterprise and entrepreneurial activity.
  • an expectation of being involved in adventurous/personally challenging activity.
  • undertaking skills based qualifications; SMSC delivery through curriculum days.
  • undertaking vocationally based learning at College / alternative provision.
  • engaging meaningfully with external role models, coaches and mentors, enhancing elements of resilience and creativity.

To view weekly timetables click here.

Teaching and Learning

To download our Teaching & Learning procedure click here.

A new approach to teaching has been introduced in order to re-engage students in their learning.  This has involved a number of changes:

  • Student groupings have been changed:  Whilst they are still broadly in year groups, students are grouped in a way that recognises their needs and ensures a positive working environment for all the students, regardless of age.  The students are grouped into ‘Pods’:  Leith and Holmwood (Key Stage 3 groups), Box and Newlands (Key Stage 4 groups).  Each Pod has a Tutor (either a teacher or Pastoral and Learning Support (PALS) member of staff.
  • Students are taught English, Maths, Science and ICT through a blend of digital learning and lessons with our specialist teachers.  This gives students and teachers the opportunity to check understanding and deepen the learning, as well as undertake practical and written work.
  • Art and PE lessons are delivered by our Specialist Teachers. 
  • Students also have a ‘Preparation for Life’ programme delivered by Tutors.
  • Students’ needs are continually assessed, and the Personal Learning Plans monitored and updated by the SENCo and Speech and Language Therapist.  

 

Quality Assurance

Quality assurance (QA) happens at all levels:

  • Teachers, PALS, SENCO and SALT support the QA of the digital learning provision.
  • The Headteacher, Teaching and Learning Consultant and Interim PALS Manager QA both digital learning and delivery and support by GGS staff.
  • School Improvement Advisor (SIA) and National Leader of Education (NLE) QA the work at all Levels.

Arrangements for Recreational & Sporting and Cultural Activities

We offer young people a range of recreational and leisure pursuits; the chance to develop hobbies and opportunities to mix socially together and with others. A variety of recreational facilities are available within GGS, which includes computers and computer games, books, magazines, traditional board games, facilities for art and craft as well as opportunities to watch television, videos and listen to music, or even play a musical instrument.

We encourage young people to have a hobby and will support them to develop existing and new ones. We may request extra funding to pay for particularly expensive hobbies or use the Pupil Premium Grant.  All young people are actively encouraged to partake in at least one or two leisure activities each week as part of rebuilding self-esteem and confidence. We acknowledge the importance of sport in developing an appropriate level of competition, teamwork, physical and mental health and so actively promote participation in a range of activities.

We are aware that some activities require qualified instructors or leaders for safety and insurance purposes. Activities involving risk will be carefully checked before they are undertaken. A parent or carer’s signed permission will be gained before a young person becomes involved in either a sporting or potentially dangerous recreational activity.

Religious Education 

Religious education is taught, on a non-denominational basis, ensuring that all students are aware of the multi-cultural and multi-faith society in which we live. The school has no affiliation to any religious denomination or religion, and parents have the right to withdraw their child from the RE lessons if they so wish. Alternative provision will be made if necessary. 

Music

Our students will be given the opportunity to experience a range of musical instruments during our Music Week which will be delivered by a therapist. 

Modern Foreign Languages

Activities will be held by Tutors to allow our students to experience a variety of languages based on themed events such as the Rugby World Cup.

Subject Choices

We encourage expression of choice, therefore we will endeavour to make provisions for students wishing to further their education in a specific subject including music or modern foreign languages. These additional subjects will be provided as options during Extended Learning sessions.