St Elizabeth's Catholic Primary School

Little Explorers

 Little Explorers is our KS2 SEND group and it is a short-term, focused intervention for children with high level need SEND, many of whom are awaiting placement at specialist provision. They may also have particular social, emotional or behavioural difficulties which are creating a barrier to learning within a mainstream class.Children attending the nurture group remain an active part of their main class, spending the morning sessions covering a Literacy and Maths curriculum and will return to their main class for the afternoon to join in with foundation subjects. 

We assess their learning and social and emotional needs termly and give help that is needed to remove the barriers to learning. The relationship with Miss Mellett the teaching assistant who leads the sessions is always nurturing and supportive, providing a role model for children. The group "check in" and "check out" of every session using our zones of regulation and we monitor these closely looking for any negative patterns or trends. We find as the children learn academically and socially they develop confidence, become responsive to others, learn self-respect and take pride in behaving well and in achieving. There are no more than 6-8 children within the group to provide highly focused support. 

 How do we assess our Little Explorers?

To be identified as being an appropriate candidate for the group the children must be working significantly below age related standards or have particular social, emotional or behavioural difficulties which are creating a barrier to learning within a mainstream class. Termly we track and monitor their progress using the following assessments:

  • Junior Language Links Speech and Language Assessment (Entry, Autumn, Spring, Exit) 
  • Sandwell Primary Numeracy Assessment (Entry, Autumn, Spring, Exit) 
  • Boxall Profile Assessment (Entry, Autumn, Spring, Exit) 

The data from these assessments inform our planning and the IEP targets for each child. This allows us to identify the gaps in their learning and teach accordingly. 

How does Little Explorers help?

The group is designed to address the social and emotional needs that can hamper pupils’ learning. So as well as providing academic teaching, the group is designed to help children develop vital social skills, to develop confidence and self-respect, and to take pride in behaving well and in achieving.

In our groups, there’s a special emphasis on language development and communication: nothing is taken for granted and everything is clearly explained by the staff, with the help of demonstrations and (where helpful) physical gestures. Pupils are given the time they need both to listen and be listened to. 

  • The group operates 5 days a week Monday-Friday 09.00-12.00pm
  • It is staffed by our experienced TA Miss Mellett and overseen by the SENDCO Miss Dwan
  • The SENDCO is responsible for the running of the group, ensuring regular observations, tracking the progress of the children, liaising with all members of staff and parents; supporting the Nurture Staff; selecting the children and overseeing the resettlement/transition of the children.

How do Little Explorer staff communicate with class teachers?  

  • Specific targets are set for children within our group according to the children’s needs. Targets are shared with the class teacher so they can promote and help the child work towards their targets.
  • Children’s IEP and Pupil Passport will be updated termly – Miss Mellett and class teacher will meet to do this jointly so that needs are met within the main classroom too.

 Please see below our example timetable.