Case Study - John Harrox Primary School
26 March, 2018
The John Harrox Primary School is a Youth Sport Trust Level 2 member based in Lincolnshire. Rebecca Hales, reception teacher and PE Coordinator has introduced the imoves package into her school and is already seeing positive effects in both the teachers and children. In this case study, she talks about her reasons for choosing imoves and the benefits on the whole school as a result.
At John Harrox Primary, one of our aims is to help each child to discover their full potential in a happy and caring environment. To enable this, we ensure our workforce is regularly up-skilled so our children are receiving the best education possible throughout all aspects of the curriculum. I came across this programme at an educational conference where it was being demonstrated for delegates, and was impressed by its interactive resources and flexibility. Now the programme has been trialled throughout school, the benefits on both the staff and children are becoming apparent and the early signs are that these benefits go beyond the PE curriculum. Delivering dance within the PE curriculum can be challenging for teachers, and introducing imoves throughout all year groups has improved how children access movement and become physically literate.
The aim of introducing this programme into school was to update the current and somewhat outdated dance elements of the PE Curriculum and transform attitudes of both teachers and children, encouraging them to recognise the value of dance in physical education.
An objective when introducing imoves into the school was to support and adequately equip our staff with the skills to deliver an area of the PE Curriculum which they have previously found difficult to facilitate by providing easy to access resources and more subject specific direction with the dance teacher video clips. The topics and music are current and relevant to modern day too.
There was also a need to teach this unit in a way to include and engage all children, as historically teachers felt boys have been less interested in this type of physical activity and haven’t shown as much enthusiasm or the same rates of progress in this area of PE as the girls.
Finally, increasing confidence in both teachers and pupils was a considered motivation in the implementation of imoves.
Upon discovering imoves, I did some research on alternative programmes and became further convinced this was the initiative best suited to our school. There were many reasons for this; however budget, flexibility and the interactive resources were important factors to my decision.
The variety in content was attractive, with sessions to engage different gender, age and cultural groups including Pilates, movement and sport specific topics. The package of video demonstrations, lesson plans and music provide a comprehensive programme which helps teachers save time, become confident in their ability to teach dance and increase their knowledge of the subject.
The content is constantly being updated with new moves, dances and sessions which ensures delivery is fresh, fun and engaging for the pupils, whilst providing weekly CPD for teachers across the whole school. It also enables teachers to incorporate other skills such as counting to a beat and encouraging teamwork and empathy in young people.
IMPACT ON THE SCHOOL
Every teacher throughout all year groups in school has committed to delivering one unit of imoves dance in the PE Curriculum this academic year, in order to try out the program for themselves and compare it to our old dance resources. The resources are interactive and allow the teachers to adequately prepare by watching the video of how a dance move or session should be effectively implemented.
By ensuring the same unit was taught across phases for example KS1 taught the Toys unit it has allowed the workforce to share tips, guidance and best practice to further increase confidence in the delivery of this area of the PE Curriculum. Teachers have shared their new found enthusiasm for these activities into PE and some have even used the programme in extracurricular school clubs across a range of age levels.
The programme has topics which promote mindfulness, control and strategies to become calm and quiet. This learning could potentially be applied in academic settings, allowing children to be mindful of their general health and wellbeing.
IMPACT ON THE YOUNG PEOPLE
In the time we have used imoves, the impact it has had on our pupils attitude towards dance has been a positive one.
At the start of the programme some of our Year 5 and 6 boys were disengaged with the dance content as they perceived it restricted them from being outside and playing sport. Part of the content available was a sport specific, football dance module which we decided to introduce to this group to increase engagement levels.
Throughout the half term it was delivered, we saw the enthusiasm for movement and dance soar in this group, resulting in them asking to perform their ‘dance’ in assembly to their parents. This was completely unexpected, and demonstrated the increase in confidence and character development.
We have also had pupils practising their dance routines and moves outside of the curriculum in their own playground time, in order to improve in time for their next session. This has shown them that different aspects of physical activity can be fun, engaging and help them to achieve in other areas of their school lives.
In a recent parents evening, we had some positive feedback praising the new initiative and outlining the positive effects they had observed on their children since starting the intiative.
One parent was particularly pleased that their daughter had come home pestering her to find a disco class for her to go to. She now attends disco dance weekly at a local community venue. It has increased her activity levels out of school along with her confidence.
KEYS TO SUCCESS
- Video content, lesson plans and measurement tools – this combination helps teachers become competent and confident in delivering aspects of the dance PE curriculum.
- Fresh ideas and updated content – bringing the PE Curriculum up to date with delivery techniques children will engage with and learn from
- Tailoring content to different groups – identifying sessions which will relate to boys, girls, different ages and abilities to ensure all children are receiving high quality opportunities in physical activity.
- Simple, effective and regular CPD through the lesson preparation videos for the workforce to help deliver a sometimes challenging area of the PE Curriculum.