All teachers had immersion days. In one school the whole school left the building except for one class. This was a ‘mystery day’. It takes time to gather resources for an immersion day, but one child said it had been ‘the best day in school ever’. They were filled with awe and wonder.
Four teachers aid that planning with children on a weekly basis for challenge areas linked to skill development was consistent throughout the school. Children were motivated and enthusiastic and can self-assess after each activity.
A pupil voice sheet is displayed in class and shared with children in a planning folder. This creates a teacher and child learning partnership.
Three teachers said that each term there was a different focus for an area of learning. Questions are asked to gather children’s prior knowledge. Using a KWL grid and circle maps, the teacher finally presents the skills to the children and they then contribute ideas for learning these. Children have surprised teachers with their ideas. Misconceptions have been revealed. There has been pupil ownership, enthusiasm and lots of excitement.
Immersion took place in many settings (e.g. paintings, topic trip in first week). Children were very excited and engaged. Lessons were more focused as they had come up with their own ideas, and more was covered in depth. In one school the school council of children planned the school fete.
“We provided pictures and words related to our topics and children walked around with their talk partner and tried to guess the 5 main areas of the topic. If they found more than five, they had to see if two ideas might be under one heading.
Once we had all the headings the class worked together to put the pictures and words on large pieces of paper with 5 headings.
Children then stuck post its with questions on to the posters.
I then collated this alongside the skills they needed to learn and we discussed different activities and ways in which they wanted to learn about these.
Children’s ideas were creative and they were more engaged and excited when covering the chosen activity.” Kessingland Primary