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Connecting Families

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"Sometimes all I want is some quality time with my mum. Even if it was a McDonalds without all the hassle of mobile phones, Facebook etc..." Harry Coventry, Year 9, Coln House School 2013.

Aim

Following a very successful OFSTED march 2013; Coln house school propose to enhance their provision for connecting familiesas a focus point in the school's development plan.

Proposal

We attach a large proportion of the success we have, to developing strong appropriate relationships with pupils. This enables pupils to have healthy trusting relationships with staff that have a clear focus on individual learning and progress. We aim to enhance our provision by extending our services to parents through adult learning, setting up support networks for parents, behaviour management support and bespoke challenges that develop teambuilding and quality time for parent/ carer and pupil to enhance bonding opportunities.

Impact

The impact of the enhanced provision will enable a greater trust between parent and school and in turn support the development of the pupil where ambition may have been lacking from parental involvement. We can offer bespoke literacy, numeracy and ICT skills to raise the parent's confidence and enable them to return to work or just support their child's learning from home. Our ambition for the pupils is growing and to support this progress for the pupils we need a triangulation of support from parent, pupil and school.

Intention

To develop a bespoke unique experience for parents and pupil to rediscover their bond or enhance their relationship without the stresses of everyday life. Thornburg, 2007, discusses how "The existence of learning communities probably predates civilization. As we embark on ourgreat adventure into the ionosphere of cyberspace, we can find guideposts in the primordialooze of consciousness". Furthermore, Gregory Bateson suggests "One day someone sat at a computer keyboard and entered the following question: "Do yousuppose that computers will someday think like humans?" After processing this request forsome time, the computer displayed the following response: "That reminds me of a story..."

For centuries camp fires have been mechanism for telling stories and at Coln House we have retraced the steps during our own physical challenges linked to Claxton's 5 R's (Responsible, Resourcefulness, Responsible, Resilience, Reflectiveness), to help facilitate social emotional aspects of learning around the campfire. We believe that opportunities for parents and children to come together and share their feelings and praise for each other after a challenge is a way of developing the parental bond required for a successful partnership. In turn this may create a stronger bond between the triangulation and help the school develop the pupils learning and progress.

Project- Connecting Families- Outdoor Challenges

One element of the project will be to develop a series or outdoor challenges supported through experienced instructors at the school. We will facilitate a teambuilding opportunity for parent/ carer and pupil and maybe external services such as families first. These will be differentiated and bespoke to the ability range of the participants. It may be as basic as a group setting up a tent, cooking some rations and getting a fire started, to climbing a mountain together. The aim is to bring people together and develop resilience through adversity. The conclusion would be a camp fire experiences where we can discuss all our strengths and what we learned about ourselves and others.