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Chalkwell Hall

Infant School


The structure of our ‘Recovery Curriculum’ uses Carpenter’s ‘5 Levers’ (A Recovery Curriculum: Loss and Life for our children and schools post pandemic)


Lever 1: Relationships – we can’t expect our students to return joyfully, and many of the relationships that were thriving, may need to be invested in and restored. We need to plan for this to happen, not assume that it will. Reach out to greet them, use the relationships we build to cushion the discomfort of returning.


This will be done through increased opportunities to focus on wellbeing:

  • Eased transition using class ‘Countries’ as an opportunity for teachers to build relationships with new classes in a ‘low stakes’ learning environment
  • Prioritising re-establishing friendships and securing new friendships,  knowing how important it is to do this in the first month of transition to reduce the negative impact on academic and social/emotional development (John Hattie) 
  • New compulsory PSHE scheme in place (PSHE Association) exploring different kinds of relationships throughout the year
  • Providing opportunities to work independently and collaboratively in different contexts
  • Additional circle time and activities to reignite relationships between children and allowing time for children to retell their lockdown stories, fears and hopes
  • Mindful starts to the day - first 20 minutes of each day mindfulness activities including colouring, music, opportunities for ‘Teacher Time’, sharing a story
  • Increase in wellbeing activities throughout the day, e.g. learning outside of the classroom, increased play opportunities
  • A staged intervention & expectations model will be used for our most vulnerable/SEN children (Sutton House Academy)
  • The principles of trauma informed practice will be implemented where necessary (safety, trustworthiness, choice, collaboration & empowerment)
  • Increased access to the Learning Mentor and Pastoral Team
  • Intervention for social and emotional/PSED needs, where required
  • Continuing to strengthen parental relationships through communication
  • Developing links between families via social networks such as the PTA
  • In EYFS the first term will focus on the Prime areas, but particularly PSED and Communication and Language. There will be increased opportunities for circle time, stories will have a PSED focus
  • Building new relationships with new families starting the school through open communication
  • In EYFS teachers will assess children against the Leuven scale of well being and involvement as part of the baseline. This will help to identify any children who may need additional support in these areas
  • EYFS interventions in the autumn term will be based on PSED and Communication and Language
  • In the return to school in March 21 a focus on re-establishing relationships with adults and peers

  • Continuation of at least daily wellbeing activities and a focus on social skills with peers in different situations, e.g. play and structured games

  • A learning focus which provides at least daily opportunities to work collaboratively beyond learning partners since we know that children have not had an opportunity to learn in this way

  • Implementation of ‘Embers the Dragon’ emotional wellbeing programme at home and in school



Lever 2: Community – we must recognise that curriculum will have been based in the community for a long period of time. We need to listen to what has happened in this time, understand the needs of our community and engage them in the transitioning of learning back into school.


This will be implemented through:

  • Continued strengthening of relationships with parents, carers and the school community
  • Open and clear communication with parents and families via PING and website
  • Use of closed Facebook page to continue to share learning opportunities and celebrate successes
  • Treating school as a central hub for the community, e.g. PTA
  • Using Reading and Communication book to share information between school and home and vice versa, as well as availability via email and telephone where appropriate
  • Continued pastoral support for wider family needs, where required
  • Liaison and referral to other services, e.g. Early Help and Social Care
  • Support for vulnerable families via funding streams, e.g. PWS, food bank vouchers, Tesco food parcels
  • Ongoing use of technology and video to support learning beyond the classroom, e.g. to extend and consolidate learning, to support homework
  • Welcoming of new school community in EYFS through communication channels
  • Re-establishing how Facebook is used when the children are at school

  • Relaxing of uniform policy to support families financially coming back to school

  • Continued pastoral support to families to make the return to school as successful as possible

  • Continued use of Zoom tuition outside of the school day for those eligible

  • Continuation of community projects, where possible, e.g. ITU Wonderwall project with Southend Hospital, ‘Hares ABout Town’ project for Havens Hospices

  • Continued reflection on how we can take part in usual school events and activities in a different way, e.g. catch ups



Lever 3: Transparent Curriculum – all of our students will feel like they have lost time in learning and we must show them how we are addressing these gaps, consulting and co-constructing with our students to heal this sense of loss.


This will be implemented through:

  • Our priorities driven by the REACH values and preparing our learners for tomorrow’s world
  • ‘Triage’ approach to identifying need, excellent formative assessment and giving and receiving feedback to and from learners
  • Clear curriculum plan and subject intent/direction for all subjects including identification of gaps in teaching and learning and priority areas
  • Emphasis on developing the ‘cultural capital’ of all learners, and in particular vulnerable learners
  • Emphasis on wellbeing before learning knowing that an anxious child is not a learning child
  • Grouping and teaching style for children with SEN is done with awareness of the children’s stage of readiness to learn
  • ‘Switching children on’ to learning and reengaging with learning through topic stimuli and rich learning experiences
  • Continued focus on the basic skills required to access wider learning
  • Focus on the learning journey and committing learning to the long term memory - continued SIP focus as a means to continually reflect and improve teaching and learning practice
  • Exploring more deeply the approach to teaching and learning, e.g. foundational and conceptual learning, when to record work. We know that it is not what we ‘do’ with children but ‘how’ we do it that will have the desired impact
  • Identifying and addressing gaps in learning - teaching to the ‘top’ and then differentiating
  • Access to intervention for academic and social/emotional need
  • In EYFS having a focus on the Prime Areas of learning as a starting point for the learning journey
  • Early speech and language development in EYFS - BPVS
  • Evaluation of the Recovery Curriculum and revisiting priorities

  • Staff CPD to ensure joint vision for the Recovery Curriculum



Lever 4: Metacognition – in different environments, students will have been learning in different ways. It is vital that we make the skills for learning in a school environment explicit to our students to reskill and rebuild their confidence as learners.


This means we will:

  • Use REACH values and ‘preparing…’ throughout teaching and learning as well as throughout school life, e.g. positive approach to behaviour and reward, exploring in assemblies
  • Simplified positive behaviour approach linked to REACH and ‘preparing…’ (rather than additional layer of ‘Golden Rules’)
  • Interventions use a model of ‘plan, monitor & evaluate’ to support children’s metacognitive skills
  • SIP priority to explore formalising a strategic approach to how we will implement a learning and life skills curriculum, e.g. Character Curriculum (PSHE Association) to complement the scheme as part of our approach to ‘preparing today’s children for tomorrow’s world’ and into EEF and Hattie research into ‘self regulation’ including the possibility for a staff leadership project
  • Finalising ‘Character Curriculum’ implementation

  • ‘Embers the Dragon’ emotional health and wellbeing scheme



Lever 5: Space – to be, to rediscover self, and to find their voice on learning in this issue. It is only natural that we all work at an incredible pace to make sure this group of learners are not disadvantaged against their peers, providing opportunity and exploration alongside the intensity of our expectations.


Caroline Pudner of Cornerstones states that: This is a crucial lever. Children deserve to experience joy and to be engaged if they are to feel secure and positive about being in school again. Lockdown may have been a narrow experience for them, but school can lift children’s spirits and provide welcome relief.


We will do this by:


  • Prioritising pupil (and staff) wellbeing as our starting point for re-engagement back into learning
  • Allowing more time in the day through wellbeing activities and time for reflection and discussion through more time commitment to ‘Teacher Time’ and a gentle/mindful start to the day, additional PSHE/wellbeing to address emerging needs and circle times
  • Using topic themes to ignite interest and re-engagement into learning
  • Maximising opportunities to learn outside of the classroom
  • Maximising opportunities to learn through play, exploration and collaboration
  • In EYFS as well as using our broader topics, teachers will work with focus children each week. This will give them the opportunity to follow the interests of the child and link their learning to things that really matter to them
  • Continued focus of ‘happy and safe’ 

  • Continued focus on different types of play to engage children back into school

  • In EYFS focus on positive interactions and adults facilitating play, cooperation and communication