At The Rissington School, we believe that it is important to prepare our pupils for life beyond Primary school; we want them to leave us being confident in themselves and positive contributors to their community. PSHE is an important subject in our school as we believe the skills and knowledge the children gain through this subject are going to be relevant to every child’s life within school and as they grow up and leave primary. At our school, PSHE isn’t viewed as a stand-alone subject, but rather a ‘whole school ethos’; PSHE is everywhere, being taught all the time whether this be directly or indirectly through all staff – not just teachers are PSHE teachers. Our aim is to ensure that all children leaving the Rissington School have every skill necessary to succeed in their later lives.
Our PSHE curriculum will: equip the children with social, personal, mindfulness and economic skills, provide them with an understanding of how to stay safe in the real and online world, allow them to make informed decisions, to understand what it means to be part of a community and to be a member of British society.
We are unique at The Rissington School because we are a split site school. Whilst we embrace the differences this might bring, we also are clear that children at both sites belong to one school and receive the same PSHE provision.
The Rissington School values of ‘Aspire, Belong and Challenge’ (ABC) are throughout the PSHE curriculum. The lessons and experiences that are planned for the children teach them to ‘Aspire’ be the best versions of themselves. PSHE at our school extends learning beyond the national curriculum and bring learning to life in the aim that children can apply their learnt skills to real life circumstances beyond the classroom. Our ‘Belong’ value is reflected in the curriculum and across the wider school, as children are taught essential social skills and learn how to be part of different communities. We provide ‘Challenge’ by having high expectations of all pupils. In addition to our ABC values, our Golden Threads are woven throughout.
- Vocabulary and Oracy: ensuring that our pupils develop the use of a wide and ambitious vocabulary. Encouraging children to speak up for what they believe in and do the right thing, debate their beliefs and be confident enough to do so.
- Resilience and Independence: instilling a growth mindset, so that pupils persevere and are independent in both their learning and social skills.
- Equality and Diversity: ensuring that learning encourages connections with our local community and the wider world, preparing them for the world beyond Primary.
Through the PSHE curriculum, we ensure that all children are active in the learning process and have implemented common language around good independent learning skills and the characteristics of effective learning, starting from the Early Years all the way through to Year 6. Growth mindset is embedded using the ‘Power of Yet!’ and understanding the importance of using the 5R’s (Resilience, Responsibility, Reciprocal, Resourceful and Reflective). We promote and encourage the children to recognise the characteristics of effective learning. These are:
- Go For it Gorilla – I will have a go.
- Exploring Elephant – I am an explorer.
- I know Rhino – I play with what I know.
- Proud Peacock – I am proud of what I do.
- Concentrating Crocodile – I join in and concentrate.
- Persevering parrot – I keep trying.
- Choosing Chimp – I choose ways to do things.
- Creative Chameleon – I have my own ideas.
- Slinky Linky Snake – I can make links.
At the Rissington School, growth mindset and independent learning is rewarded and recognised when children support each other to overcome challenges they face and to be proactive in their learning.
PSHE is supported by the school RSHE policy; this policy was written following consultation with Gloucestershire Healthy Living and Learning, the teaching staff of The Rissington School, the governing body of the school and a consultation with the parent community..
Our intent is implemented through PSHE lessons, but also across the wider curriculum and school society. As a school, we enrolled on the Early Adopter register for the new Statutory Guidance in September 2020. As part of this, we audited the expectations of the new statutory guidance and used the People in the Know (PinK) curriculum programme written by Gloucestershire Healthy Living and Learning (GHLL) to ensure that our curriculum met statutory requirements, and to highlight where we extended our children’s learning beyond the curriculum. The PinK Curriculum planning tool was created by GHLL to help and support schools to plan and support their curriculum. It is very flexible and can be used in a variety of different ways.
Our PSHE curriculum can be seen on our ‘Two Pathways to PSHE’ document, which maps the path of learning a child will take through the school depending on their starting point in our two-year cycle. Children start this pathway in either Pre-school or Reception, and follow the relevant Prime Areas from the EYFS framework; focusing on Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Physical Development, and Understanding the World. In Reception, this is enriched with the beginnings of the PinK Curriculum for Foundation Stage.
From this point forward, our curriculum ensures that PSHE teaching is progressive and builds on prior learning through each Key Stage. PSHE is a naturally cyclical subject, with common threads being built upon across all key stages. Our curriculum ensures that learning is revisited each year and then built on. Teachers know what their class will cover in their Key Stage, and what has been covered in previous years so that they can move the children’s learning on.
To ensure that PSHE lessons are inclusive, all teachers at The Rissington School will anticipate the barriers that may arise during activities, lessons or a series of lessons for pupils with particular SEN and/or disabilities. When planning, teachers will consider ways of minimising or reducing barriers so that all pupils can fully take part and learn. In some activities, pupils with SEN and/or disabilities will be able to take part in the same way as their peers. In others, some modifications or adjustments will be made to include everyone. In other activities, provision will be a ‘parallel’ activity for pupils with SEN and/or disabilities, so that they can work towards the same lesson objectives as their peers, but in a different way.
All children have access to additional enrichment opportunities, which expand on the aims currently set out in the National Curriculum and Statutory Guidance. These include external visits and visitors, school council, kindness ambassadors and play leaders. We also have a strong emphasis on wellbeing at The Rissington School, as we identified a growing number of children attending school with mental wellbeing concerns and increasingly complex home lives. Due to this, and the growing national focus on young people’s mental health, we felt we needed to equip them with the skills to cope with this. We have now developed a wellbeing curriculum which runs through the whole school; every class gets additional curriculum time focused on wellbeing, with a specialist teacher. For children who we identify as needing additional, more specialist support, we provide further small group or individual guidance with our specialist teacher.
As a result, The Rissington School has a community of compassionate, resilient and mindful children, who challenge themselves to be the best version of themselves. They are confident to take risks in their learning, support each other and make informed decisions. The children feel that PSHE at the Rissington School helps them “know how to be safe”, “learn how to respect others” and “know the difference between right and wrong”.
See Wellbeing Page for further details.