Hornchurch High School is a mixed secondary school with academy status for around 800 11- to 16-year-olds in Hornchurch, Essex and a member of the Partnership Learning Group.
David Norris, Assistant Headteacher says: “At Hornchurch High, we believe that the skills and qualities instilled in young people will have a profound impact on their lives and future opportunities. Therefore, the curriculum has been designed so that the pupils can develop their personal and social strengths. The rich experience and skills’ development from enrichment of all the students at the school is captured by being recorded on Kloodle during or after each lesson or activity and can be demonstrated to the Senior Leadership Team and parents. Using Kloodle is a fantastic way of supporting and demonstrating personal development, whilst having all the data in one place and satisfying Ofsted requirements.”
The Ethos Of The School
The school promotes an ethos of “Aspire, Believe, Achieve” and this sits at the heart of the curriculum and everything they do at the school. The purpose is to get the children to aim high, be the best they can be and achieve personal success both academically and outside of exams.
In order to satisfy this last point, the broad and balanced curriculum is bolstered by a wide range of enrichment and extra-curricular opportunities, which support the students in tailoring their learning to their skills, interests and preferences. They can also utilise the state-of-the art facilities at the school.
Activities And Enrichment Beyond Exams
The school believes that the skills and qualities instilled in young people will have a profound impact on their lives and future opportunities. Therefore, the curriculum has been designed so that the pupils can develop their personal and social strengths.
In order to do this, there are a range of extra-curricular and enrichment activities on offer in the timetable to promote personal development. This includes:
- Personal Development: Comprising a 25-minute slot at the start of each day on a diverse range of topics each week, such as sexism and racism. Specific skills are highlighted and covered each term, reinforced at school assemblies and workshops. There is also a Leadership Programme
- Civic Lessons: This is effectively the school’s PSHE programme, with one lesson per week. The school ethos and values of Kindness, Friendship, Resilience, Curiosity and Respect have been selected to help learners grow personally, socially as well as academically, with a focus on being able to navigate through life issues relating to mental health, physical health, relationships etc.
- RSE: There is one form time every fortnight and a series of lessons bespoke to the year group in wellbeing lessons
- Drop Down Days: These days take place once a term to enable students to contemplate life outside of school, such as local history, careers, social issues and many more.
- Department Activities: Each department offers relevant enrichment activities, for example Duke of Edinburgh in Geography, problem-solving in Maths and debating in English.
- Extra-curricular Activities: this includes sports at school and partnerships with local clubs
Understandably, the school wants to demonstrate all of this enrichment and the activities all the students have done during the term to the Senior Leadership Team and parents. The easy way is through Kloodle….
The Way Kloodle Is Used
Activities are uploaded onto Kloodle, the digital platform, each term by a member of staff. This previously laborious and time-consuming job, which was managed via spreadsheets, has been replaced by one simple upload to Kloodle. The uploaded activities identify the enrichment exercise and indicate the associated character traits inherent within the different experiences. Learners can choose or ‘grab’ the activities from a list on the platform as they decide to undertake them, or, alternatively, teachers can assign activities to individual students or groups of students.
The rich experience and skills’ development from enrichment at the school is captured by being recorded on Kloodle during or after each lesson or activity. Learners do this by uploading photos, videos and blogs to their individual Kloodle profile, tagging in the skills they are honing as part of the activity.
Learners do this by uploading photos, videos and blogs to their individual Kloodle profile, tagging in the skills they are honing as part of the activity. By downloading the Kloodle app to their phones or via safari, photos and posts about activities can be recorded quickly as they are completed.
Teachers can post awards to celebrate positive behaviours and achievements. And here below are some real-life excellent examples of how students use Kloodle for reflections on topics like mental health and drama.
Reflection is a very powerful component of the process as young people think more deeply about identifying skills and then how to develop them, so personal reflections can be added to Kloodle after activities, when students consider how their skills have evolved.
Building The Skills Wheel
Each individual student has a skills wheel on their Kloodle profile, which illustrates the growth in skill development. Hornchurch High school has a framework of thirteen values which they want to work towards. By completing tasks, learners can identify how their aptitudes can grow their individual skills wheel. That feels good!
All of these skills’ exercises carried out by students build self-awareness and the most important aspect is that the skills are transferable.
Data Collection On Participation And Distance Travelled
QR codes can be added to name tags for each student or, say, attached to their school diary. At an event or group activity, like a talk or a form session, the teacher scans the individual students’ QR codes and the information relating to the activity is instantly uploaded to the individuals’ Kloodle profiles. Thus, group activities can be accounted for and data gathered.
Hornchurch High is keen to gather evidence relating to participation in enrichment. As well as this, they also capture data which measures the distance travelled for their learners, individually and universally, in regard to their character development and educational journey. Learners who want to earn more recognition then add their own reflections and create a ‘journal of experiences’, which is a timeline of their own story. The school also wants to use the data to hone the enrichment programme by pruning activities which add least value and replacing with ones which they believe will.
The Convenience Of Having All The Data In One Place
By uploading the information to Kloodle, the school is provided with all the necessary data on progression over time. Also, all the enrichment data is in one place and there is no need for different systems and spreadsheets for the numerous activities.
Total Satisfaction Of Ofsted
Ofsted’s inspection framework now includes a section for assessment called “Personal Development”. It means that schools need to provide evidence of extra-curricular activities, character and personal development, and careers guidance. For the highest outcomes in personal development, a school must present their pupils with a wide, rich range of experiences and, as per the school motto ‘excellence for all’, this is what Hornchurch High School is striving to achieve.
Using Kloodle is a fantastic way of supporting and demonstrating personal development.