The vision for Communication and Language at Park Community Academy:
“At Park Community Academy we aspire to enable all pupils to grow and develop as effective communicators in preparation for adult life.”
At Park Community Academy (PCA) we provide a school environment which actively promotes children’s speaking and listening, language and communication skills. We value language and communication development as vital in children’s wellbeing and ability access and make progress across the whole curriculum. The National Curriculum for English highlights the importance of spoken language in pupil’s development across the whole curriculum, underpinning the development of reading and writing. At Park Community Academy we seek to celebrate each child’s communication strengths and meet their individual needs within a total communication, child centred approach.
Communication and Language also link with the curriculum areas for English, Reading and Writing which set out in detail what pupils in different Key Stage ability ranges will be taught in relation to the programme of study for Spoken Language (which includes Speaking and Listening).
We aim to provide a whole school learning environment which:
· Enhances all pupils’ ability to functionally communicate with increasing clarity.
· Enables all pupils to understand and make sense of the world around them.
· Enables all pupils to make informed choices and express their wishes, needs and feelings.
· Ensures accessibility for all pupils to the curriculum through effective differentiation and planning.
· Supports the development of a positive working partnership with parents/ carers and outside agencies.
In order to achieve these aims, the school adopts a clearly understood approach, which does not leave language and communication development to chance, but instead provides consistency, clarity and the opportunity to measure individual progress.
A Total Communication approach is adopted across the school. Total Communication encourages the use of all forms of communication alongside the spoken word such as gestures, vocalisations, sign supported language and symbols. This approach supports pupils in understanding and communicating with those around them.
Speaking and listening is planned and delivered as outlined in the Schemes of Work for the subject/planning for English and also throughout all curriculum areas. At PCA we recognise that communication is a continual activity in which learning will take place throughout the school day, in and out of the classroom. Teachers will consider and identify opportunities for developing the communication skills of all learners in their class within social times and other lessons. However, pupils will also participate in communication lessons which will build on children’s strengths and move them forward.
Opportunities for the development of language and communication skills at PCA include:
· Teaching sessions, formal and informal, and general activities
· Discreet communication and language approaches/ projects such as colourful semantics and LEGO therapy
· Social times, in the playground, drinks and lunch times
· Visits out of school
· Times of transition, arriving at school and going home
· Movement around the school
Park Community Academy also creates opportunities to challenge and stretch our higher achieving pupils, by offering 'French' instead of 'Communication' on the timetable.