DRET Primary Home Learning
Aims of our Strategic Approach
- To provide a platform that is accessible for all students regardless of access to technology at home.
- To continually encourage all pupils to access learning while schools are shut through a variety of media.
- To provide high-quality resources suitable for distance learning appropriate for all ages and stages of learning.
- To provide training and support for those who lack confidence with the use of technology.
- To provide effective communication and support for parents/carers to support students whilst at home.
The David Ross Education Trust consists of 34 academies, of which 24 cover areas of the primary curriculum.
Given the unprecedented nature of the national closure of schools for an unknown period, we are tasked with providing the best possible solution to the challenge of distance learning. This will be best achieved if we are able to secure, during the period of closure, the highest percentage of our pupils possible engaging in quality learning.
During the period of school closures, during which distance learning replaces in-school learning, we have to consider the following challenging factors:
- Full anytime access to appropriate IT hardware will vary from family to family.
- The range of media we employ may further limit the access to learning for some families.
- There will be a wide disparity in the level of engagement in home learning from household to household.
- Parents and carers will feel the need to act as teachers.
- Pupils, used to a high level of teacher input in their learning, will need to adapt to more independent learning.
- Teachers will need to greatly increase their skills in designing effective online learning materials.
- Providing pupils with feedback about their learning will require careful management.
- Some pupils may not be able to access online learning due to SEN/D issues.
- The wide use of the internet for learning activities will raise the importance of e-safety.
Alleviating the challenges:
To lessen the impact of the above challenges, we will employ the following:
- Select a small number of easy to access online platforms for communicating learning materials.
- Provide alternatives to online learning and ensure the delivery/collection of these is regular.
- Adapt some of the online materials to address specific needs of individual pupils.
- Monitor closely the level of engagement of all pupils, academy by academy.
- Communicate regularly with families to understand why pupils are not engaged in home learning.
- Provide all the support and advice possible to enable pupils to engage in learning where they have not been.
- Communicate regularly with parents and carers to provide support with accessing home learning.
- Reassure parents that they are not expected to act as teachers.
- Design online materials so that they support longer periods of independent learning.
- Provide set times for pupils to receive feedback on their learning.
- Provide set times for parents and carers to receive support with their children’s home learning.
- Ensure e-safety is included regularly in communications with pupils, parents & carers.
Support from the central team:
Principals will remain the key overseers of the provision for home learning in their schools but the Trust’s Primary Education Team will support and contribute through the following:
- Liaising constantly with the DRET IT team to ensure all issues with hardware/software/online usage are addressed.
- Facilitate online forums for teachers to share best practice across DRET primary providers.
- Facilitate online forums for subject leaders to share best practice in home learning.
- Promote the priorities of continuation during the closure period of:
- Early reading development / phonics/ regular reading
- Year 6 readiness for secondary
- Year 5 readiness for Year 6
- Fluency in maths
- Expectations to complete tasks to normal standards and quantity.
- Provide accessible and meaningful CPD opportunities.
- Ensure that the whole professional community learn from each other so that the quality, efficiency, and effectiveness of home learning evolves continually during the closure period.
Means for providing home learning:
To ensure all students receive the materials from their teachers to enable them to learn at home, we will employ the following methods for delivery:
- Google classroom
- Class Dojo
- Hard copies delivered to home
- Links to appropriate internet sites
- Signposts to appropriate television programmes.
Enhancing the home learning experience:
The key and significant difference for pupils with home learning as opposed to in-school learning is the absence of the face to face contact with teachers and other pupils. The following will be employed to help improve the quality of home learning:
- Teachers will be available at set times to explain work to parents and carers.
- Teachers will, where appropriate, video themselves explaining, modelling, and providing the input for a piece of work.
- Where possible, home learning will resemble in class learning in breaking a lesson into smaller parts.
- Providing challenges for pupils in the form of whole Trust competitions subject by subject.
- Keeping as much variation to the activities as is appropriate to help maintain levels of interest and maximise pupil engagement.
- Providing content that is pre-loaded and can, therefore, be accessed by pupils when convenient.
- Providing live content, such as ‘story time’, that recreates the sense of whole class learning.
- Maintaining progression through the curriculum map in core subjects; Talk 4 writing; Talk 4 reading; maths mastery; CKC.
Assessment of progress and attainment:
It will not be possible to accurately assess pupil progress and attainment through home learning. Once schools reopen and pupils return to classes, there will be an immediate need to assess where pupils are currently, to inform planning for the first weeks back. It is expected that there will be a wide range and the closing of these gaps will require careful planning for.