Literacy at Ellesmere is a wide and varied experience. From EYFS through to Post 16 the students will have the opportunity to engage with many different strategies and learning environments. Visual clues will be provided to all students through a variety of different ways including the use of Widgit, Colourful Semantics and PECs where appropriate.
Students will also have the supported guidance of a reading programme. The reading programmes at Ellesmere are generally in line with Letters and Sounds but further reading programmes are being established to target students who may have difficulties with phonics.
Students are taught thematically throughout the college, encountering basic skills alongside sharing stories, poetry, non-fiction and developing verbal communication skills. As the students progress through the college, they begin studying towards an appropriate qualification in Year 10. In Post 16, the focus is very much on functional literacy; looking at literacy in the community, in the home and in the workplace.
Phonics and reading schemes in operation:
Staff teaching maths at Ellesmere use a range of visual and kinaesthetic equipment and present students with practical problem-solving tasks.
Students are taught maths as a discrete subject whilst also making links with other areas of the curriculum. In the Primary classes, students stay in their class groups, which are mixed age and ability for maths. Work is planned to link to the topics and adapted to meet individual needs.
From Year 7 students stay in tutor groups within their pathway. Pupils continue to learn through practical maths as much as possible alongside some more formal methods where appropriate. Pupils cover all key areas of maths throughout the year with a focus on repetition of key skills.
KS4 pupils are mainly ability set for maths. They will continue to focus on key skills and maths topics as appropriate to their level. Pupils in KS4 will be working on gaining an accreditation (Entry Level or GCSE) as appropriate to their ability.
Post 16 students’ numeracy is aimed more at life skills: giving practice in the areas of numeracy that will be most important in their adult life. Pupils are ability set and continue to learn key maths skills throughout. During Post 16 pupils will be working on gaining further accreditations as appropriate to their level and needs.
Students’ progress through all the topics of the National Curriculum (NC) at a pace and level suited to their individual needs. Their work is assessed continuously and students are encouraged to assess their own and their peers’ work in class.