Being part of Britain
As a school, we value and celebrate the diverse heritages and cultures of everybody at Owler Brook. Alongside this, we value and celebrate being part of Britain. We celebrate traditions, such as Harvest festival during the Autumn term, Eid Parties and Christmas performances. We also value and celebrate national events, for example Remembrance Day.
Children here learn about being part of Britain from different specific perspectives. We learn about Britain, its capital cities, counties, rivers, mountains and where Britain is in relation to the rest of Europe and other countries in the world
Children explore how Britain has changed over the years through exciting themes and projects.
Children, parents and staff have many opportunities for their voices to be heard at Owler Brook. Democracy is central to how we operate. Parent, child and staff questionnaires are sent out termly and the findings are shared with all stakeholders. We are then able to demonstrate how we are working to improve the school for everyone.
Each year the children decide upon their class charter and the rights associated with these. All the children contribute to the drawing up of the charter which is displayed in the classroom and referred to throughout the year.
Classes vote for their animal name which helps them to bond as a pack/tribe always trying to do their best and help each other.
We are currently establishing our School Council who will be formally elected in true British electoral style and demonstrates democracy in action. Candidates will make speeches, pupils will consider characteristics important for an elected representative, pupils will vote in secret using ballot boxes. The Council will be made up of two representatives from each class. The SLT and The School Council will meet regularly to discuss issues raised by the different classes. The council will be awarded its own budget and be able to genuinely effect change within the school.
Other examples of ‘pupil voice’ are:
- Children have the opportunity to nominate and vote for others to receive awards.
- Using steps to success, children are asked to respond and reflect on their learning
- Children nominate various charities and organise events to raise money.
- Parents are regularly involved in fund raising activities such as cake sales for McMillan and writing funding bids to run and maintain our Owler Brook Scouts Association.
- Philosophy for children is taught across the school with children having opportunities to vote for lines of enquiries, tackle more challenging issues and learn to disagree with others in an appropriate manner.
- Children organise and run stalls for the Annual Fayre.
Pupils are always listened to by adults and are taught to listen carefully and with concern for each other, respecting the right of every individual to have their opinions and voices heard. We encourage pupils to take ownership of not only their school but also of their own learning and progress.
Children have been involved in activities to improve the local area such as tree planting, a community litter pick and work with the road safety team to make our roads safer.
Rules and laws
The importance of rules and laws, whether they be those that govern our school or our country, are referred to and reinforced often, such as in assemblies and when reflecting on behaviour choices. At the start of the school year, each class discusses and sets its own Class Charter, a set of principles that are clearly understood by all and seen to be necessary to ensure that every class member is able to learn in a safe and ordered environment.
Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves, and the consequences when laws are broken. These values are reinforced in different ways:
- Visits/assemblies by the police and fire service e.g. Halloween/Bonfire talks
- Through Religious Education, where faiths and different beliefs are explored
- During other school subjects, where an appreciation for different rules is essential such as sport lessons.
- Competitions in school e.g. Sporting events across the Partnership and local competitions like Young Artist of the year.
- Y6 visit to Crucial Crew
- Playground buddies help organise games and equipment at lunchtime. They also help children who may need a friend or some support.
Alongside rules and laws, we promote freedom of choice and the right to respectfully express views and beliefs. Through the provision of a safe, supportive environment and empowering education, we provide boundaries for our young pupils to make choices safely; for example:
- Choices around projects, where to take their learning and how to present it.
- Choices around the participation in extra-curricular activities.
- Owler Brook children are all encouraged to join the Children’s University Scheme which celebrates their achievements and learning outside the classroom such as afterschool clubs, Scouts, Mosque classes, swimming lessons.
- Philosophy for Children lessons.