This is offered to children who have, for whatever reason, found it hard to learn to read through classroom teaching. We encourage all children to read as frequently as possible at home and at school but if, despite this, they find it difficult they may require more specific input with a reading programme designed to support their individual reading needs.
Some children take longer to develop the fine motor skills needed to make them confident writers. There are many ways they practise these in school and at home. All kinds of cutting, drawing, colouring and writing help develop hand control and any kind of construction toys or toys with small pieces to move around are ideal for developing finger strength and dexterity. For children who find this area more difficult we offer additional activities, working in a small group, based around these skills. We also offer support to older pupils specifically for developing the fluent style of writing they will need as they move on in their education.
For other children gross motor skills, including balance and coordination, take longer to develop. PE in school and activities at home such as swimming, cycling and other sports help to develop these motor skills but we also offer small group work to support development.
There are times when children benefit from targeted support in a small group environment out of the classroom. The target focus of the group will vary. We have targeted groups for more able children who benefit from extension activities as well as groups for children who need support in developing particular skills. The aim is always to enable each child to reach their maximum potential.
‘The Den’ is a very special place in our school. It is here that our ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistant) works with children who may be feeling sad, worried, angry or frustrated. There are many reasons children may feel this range of emotions. Sometimes something about school worries them; finding some work tricky or falling out with friends. Sometimes something from home upsets them; concern about a grandparent who is not well or a pet which has died. Children generally work for a session a week for a set period of time to help them deal with the situation they are facing, but some children need the ongoing reassurance of someone they can turn to regularly. Teachers can ask for children to have this support but parents and children also ask for help. Children who have worries know that there is someone they can turn to and a place they can go to ask for help with their feelings.