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Westgate Primary School

We Teach, We Learn, We Care


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Westgate Recovery Curriculum

The Westgate Primary School Recovery Curriculum


As a school, we have been thinking carefully about what a curriculum should look like for our children when they return after the school closures, brought into action following the Covid-19 pandemic. We will be implementing for this period and into next term a “recovery curriculum” which acknowledges that there have been big losses to children as they have stayed at home and that these losses can contribute to pupil’s mental health with anxiety, trauma and bereavement playing a large role. Children will perhaps have experienced these aspects all at once and in a sudden and unplanned fashion which can leave children feeling vulnerable.  

As a school, we are also very mindful of the impact this pandemic has had on our children's attainment and progress. This new recovery curriculum will support our children's transition back into school so that they are then able to make accelerated progress in class.


Our recovery curriculum has been structured around 4 areas:


1) Supporting our children to build positive relationships with others

Many of our children will require support to rebuild their strong relationships they once had in school. They may need to re-learn how to interact in class, take turns and share, problem solve, seek help from an adult when it's needed and know which adults help and keep them safe when they need them. 

To support this area, our curriculum will:

- build in opportunities to develop turn taking and sharing. 

- provide children with independent learning opportunities to develop joint play

- ensure adults build in opportunities to give sole attention to pupils to rebuild relationships. 

- build in PSHE opportunities to explore which adults in school keep us safe, and how they do that. 



2) Supporting our children to manage their feelings and behaviours

We also believe many of our children will experience emotions and feelings that they may not have had in the past. Our recovery curriculum will support pupils to relearn the positive behaviour they may have forgotten outside the school environment and we will equip out children with self-regulation strategies to help them feel safe and calm. 

To support this area, our curriculum will:

- be built around clear routines and communication for all children

- build in opportunities for children to express themselves and share their experiences during the school closures. 

- make use of clear behaviour expectations, focused wholly on our behaviour policy and Successful Learner Gems. 

- build in tools to support children in communication, such as circle time, mindfulness sessions and therapeutic play times. 



3) Supporting our children to enjoy school and make excellent progress

We wish for all of our children to experience once again the many moments of success and achievement in school. This learning will be within our children's abilities and sits alongside an understanding that potential trauma experienced by our children during the school closures may impact on our children's ability to learn in the near future. Despite this, we will build in new learning opportunities that will look like familiar structured sessions that the children are used to (such as phonics, maths, guided reading etc.) so that our children can rejuvenate with the feeling of success and the desire to engage and achieve. 


To support this area, our curriculum will:

- provide sessions that will be familiar to our children

- provide opportunities for our children to engage in some independent learning

- make use of resources that our children are familiar with (such as knowledge organisers and word mats for example).



4) Supporting our children's physical health and well-being

We also understand that many of our children will need to re-engage with physical health and well-being routines, whilst also learning new routines to keep themselves and others safe with regards to infection control. As a school, we have introduced a great number of safety measures and rules that our children must adhere to. We will take the necessary time to explain these changes to our children and the reasons for their introduction. We will reiterate to our children that keeping them safe at all times is our number one priority. 

To support this area, our curriculum will:

- include sessions that explore how school life and the learning environment is different to how it used to be.

- seek to teach children explicitly about hand washing and hygiene practice

- ensure all children are clear on the new expectations in school and know where to go if they have any questions or concerns. 

Additional PSHE sessions

Each of our year groups will additionally receive discrete PSHE lessons on various topics related to coronavirus and the impact it has had on our society. These topics include:

- Feeling Safe

- Reconnecting with friends and school

- Keeping Healthy (hygiene and hand washing)

- Dealing with worries/anxiety

- Gratitude and appreciation/ Positive thinking

- Loss and bereavement

Establishing a Baseline

Additionally, we will be carrying out careful assessments of our children with regards to their academic progress. We understand that our children's experiences during the home-learning period may vary from one individual to another. With that in mind, we will be ensuring that our curriculum matches the needs of our children, using teacher assessments in class, and planning to address any gaps that are discovered. 

Staffing Structure

We have also made changes to our staffing structure for the 2020/21 academic year. Staff have kept the same class for 2020-21 if this has been possible and the first four weeks of the new academic year have been structured to allow settling back into the routines of school, whilst re-establishing a baseline for the children so that we can work quickly to address any gaps.

Returning to School Action Plan

Recovery Curriculum Outline