Reflections on the Level 1 Learning Programmes
Chris and his classmates seemed to thoroughly enjoy the lessons designed for them as a part of the Level 1 Learning Programme. The relevance of targets and the wide range of activities accessed meant that students engaged well during most lessons when relevant support needs were met.
The incorporation of unconstrained learning outcomes and progression pathways in the Level 1 Learning Programme meant that Chris’ class teacher was able to effectively record and capture all progress made, regardless of how ‘small’ a step in the student’s learning journey each achievement may have appeared. Chris and his classmates all respond well to praise and enjoy any reason for a celebration, so benefitted greatly from this attention to detail!
Chris’ parents have reported ‘a big improvement in Chris’ behaviour and communication’ since the start of the programme. They described the lessons as ‘very interesting’, and support the programme fully.
Implementation of the Level 1 Learning Programme
As this was the first time the school has used this curriculum, it took some time to become familiar with the terminology and structure. However, when the flexibility of this curriculum and thus, it’s accessibility to all learners, was truly understood, it became a powerful and useful tool to provide clear direction and a breadth of experiences to students’ learning. The unconstrained nature of the learning outcomes, combined with differentiation through the progression pathways allows for a unique and personalised learning journey to be mapped out for each student. This personalisation is essential to create a learning programme that is not only engaging, but also relevant and meaningful for each student.
Planning and evidence collection templates were designed to suit the needs of the school and the working style of the class teacher. These were discussed in depth with the school principal, teaching team and adapted throughout the process.
For many students in Chris’ school, the Level 1 Learning Programme will be accessed over 5 years. Having the adequate time to allow for real progress to be captured is necessary and a wonderful opportunity offered by this programme. However, over time the volume of evidence collected across the school will increase quickly. Currently the school uses class laptops and a school-wide external hard drive to store information and evidence safely. These sources of storage have a limited capacity and further sources of safe storage will need to be investigated in the future.
The Level 1 Learning Programme offers students the opportunity to access a relevant, varied and engaging learning journey with national accreditation and celebration of achievement. It is extremely flexible in nature, so allows students to flourish in their own way, at their own pace with individual talents and strengths recognised along the way.