We use a number of techniques at Frederick Bird to enhance our children’s learning. Included here are descriptions of the techniques and how you can support us in your child’s learning.
Click on the sections below to expand the details:
- Learning at the right level
At Frederick Bird we want each and every child to access learning at the right level for them, so that they can make the most progress possible.
We have introduced a system of learning we call ‘Metals’. The learning objective is set for the lesson and then children are offered a choice of access points – Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum – each harder than the last to suit their confidence, ability and previous learning. The teacher explains the choice and helps guide the children to the right metal.
The children then can move fluidly through the metals. If they start on Bronze and are quickly successful they move to Silver. If they start at Gold and find they struggle too much they can go to Silver and then move back up. They are not ‘grouped’ necessarily and so do not have to be stuck at one level. We do not need them to complete a whole sheet of correct sums for example, to move on. As soon as they have understood, they move up to the next metal.
Gold usually represents an age-related access point.
Platinum is an activity or task that deepens learning and there is also a ‘Shiny bag’ task for those that need to be challenged further.
The system gives the children some choice and ownership in their learning and we encourage them to challenge themselves.
Our learning and Teaching policy, in the School Performance section, includes more information about this and about other ways that we encourage the children to learn to their full potential.
- Growth Mindset
What Is Growth Mindset?
The term ‘growth mindset’ refers to a way of thinking, learning and taking on challenges. A person with a growth mindset is open to constructive criticism, takes feedback and uses it, takes on new challenges, pushes themselves outside of their comfort zone and shows resilience and perseverance.
Growth Mindset At Frederick Bird Primary
Our children are all encouraged to display a growth mindset in school (and at home). They have been taught how their brains work and how new connections are formed when we try new things and practise them, over and over. Pupils have learnt about famous and influential people who have succeeded due to having a growth mindset and not giving up on their goal. We have had PSHE lessons and assemblies about growth mindset, but most importantly, teachers and pupils have embraced the language and the way of thinking that promotes using a growth mindset in all lessons.
Some key aspects of Growth Mindset at Frederick Bird Primary School
- We remember it’s always OK to make mistakes – we learn from them
- We never give up! We try a different approach, or use a different strategy
- We learn from each other – children often make the best teachers!
- We don’t compare ourselves with others, but we do learn from others
- We challenge ourselves – which really helps us make progress
- We take risks – we don’t limit ourselves by taking the easy option
- We join in as much as possible – and we learn much more by being involved
- We remember that mastering something new feels so much better than doing something you can already do
- We remember that the brain is making new connections all the time – the only thing you need to know is that you can learn anything!
We hope this will help you to support positive attitudes towards learning and high self-esteem in children at home, just as we are doing in school.
Parents Guide to a Growth Mindset
- Believe -Children need to know that they CAN grow their abilities. and develop new skills. They need to persevere and never give up.
- Effort and Praise – Praise children for their hard work and effort, but not their intelligence. Hard work and effort are essential to developing and learning new skills and abilities.
- Resilience – Challenges are part of everyday life. Resilience is something we can build to help us bounce back and thrive when facing life’s challenges.
- Embrace Challenge – Encourage your child to learn new things, take risks and push out of their comfort zone.
Turn challenges into opportunities to learn and grow.
- The Power of Yet – Wherever they are now, is just a starting point. Can’t do it?
You just can’t do it YET!
- Mistakes – Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. They are a vital part of the learning process. Learning from our mistakes enables us to ‘grow’ our brains and make progress.
Grow Your Brain – Diet and sleep can affect children’s behavior and ability to learn:
- Eat a balanced diet and drink plenty of water
- Sleep 9-10 hours every night
To see quotes from our children about Growth Mindset, click here
- Guided Imagery
Guided imagery is beneficial in a number of ways; if undertaken regularly it can help children to relax, reduce stress, also improve focus and concentration. Furthermore, it can improve performance, contribute to the achievement of skills and control or change negative feelings in response to particular situations including test anxiety.
A few minutes every day can prove more beneficial than spending more time on it less frequently, consequently daily practice is advisable.
Our guided imagery is subject to copyright so we can only share it with members of the school. All children in year 6 will have been told the password to the audio files in class: Guided Imagery Links