Challenge for All
Challenge is a key value at Bradon Forest. In lessons, students of all abilities will have the opportunity to complete Challenge Tasks that help them achieve. Challenge Tasks are identified via our “challenge horse” or a yellow box on a lesson visual and they encourage students to think deeply and more widely, regardless of their ability. Most Able students are given specific challenges appropriate to their ability. ‘Teaching from the top’ allows challenge to be presented at every level as students are supported to access higher-order concepts and materials. Challenge within lessons also requires specific guidance from teachers. This guidance allows students to become competent in accessing higher-order thinking skills within tasks and in examination questions. In line with this, all teachers are required to focus on developing student progression on higher-order thinking skills across a 5 year curriculum plan, ultimately allowing students to develop a ‘mastery of learning’ upon leaving Bradon Forest after Year 11. In addition, metacognition and self-regulated learning are among the skills that students develop during their time at Bradon Forest. These specific skills ensure that students leave with the ability to understand their own thinking, thus preparing them for the prospect of higher-education and the world of work.
Identification of Most Able Students
Currently, the government’s Department of Education gives no benchmarks for the identification of the Most Able when they enter secondary school. At Bradon Forest, we use Year 6 SATs results to make a judgement based on students’ ability across both English and Maths. Our philosophy here is to identify the students who have the greatest potential across all curriculum subjects, as dictated by the foundation skills in literacy and numeracy. Being a Most Able student means higher academic expectations, but also greater opportunities to widen their educational experience. Whilst we identify students on their potential before entering Bradon Forest, we are committed to being flexible in how we identify Most Able students and welcome suggestions from subject teachers and parents as students develop their cognitive and metacognitive ability from Year 7 to 11. Each student will be monitored on a case by case basis in order to unlock their true potential.
As well as using Key Stage 2 and cognitive ability test data, this year each subject and faculty have produced Most Able criteria that they use to determine which students in their individual cohorts are Most Able in their specific subject. Using this criteria, staff are able to select students that they feel are capable of achieving beyond what is expected of the average student in their subject. When selected as Most Able in a particular subject, these students will be encouraged to participate in extra-curricular activities, access extension and challenge tasks in lessons and deepen understanding and thinking independently through research. Students that are selected as Most Able may be chosen to represent their subject at school events and will also be encouraged to access the higher-level resources on the subject’s Most Able Sharepoint page. Furthermore, the selection of subject specific Most Able students is an ongoing process and the cohort selected for each subject will be reflected on and revised throughout the year, ensuring that students are consistently demonstrating that they fit the criteria set by each subject team. Although this is a new process of identifying Most Able students, it is an excellent way to reward students for their hard work and talents across a variety of subjects, including those that are vocational and practical.
Any queries: email@example.com marked for the attention of the Most Able Coordinators, Mr J Koniarski and Mrs C Clark.