Relationships @ The Acorns
Article 12: Every right to express their views, feelings and wishes in all matters affecting them
Article 13: Every child must be free to express their thoughts and opinions
Article 15: Every child has the right to meet with other children and join groups or organisations
Article 29: Education must develop every child’s personality, talents and abilities to the full
As a Rights Respecting School we promote respect, dignity and non-discrimination, to establish and build upon shared values, adults and pupils collaborate to produce a class charter by choosing three rights which they feel are most relevant. The charter is displayed in the classroom and is a reminder of the shared values and principles. It is a point of reference and signifies the shared enterprise and acts as the ‘social glue’ to bind everyone together. As a Rights Respecting School, our children are treated as equals by their fellow pupils and by the adults in the school.
Positive relationships are essential for all things positive to happen within an effective school. We place building strong, positive relationships at the forefront of everything we do at The Acorns and ensure that all our practice is trauma informed.
We are always aware that we, as staff who work closely with our pupils, share responsibility with the parents/carers for the children in our care and make every effort to provide the care which any responsible parent would be expected to make.
At The Acorns Primary and Nursery School, we expect and encourage respectful behaviour and self-regulation from all pupils in order to achieve an environment which enables emotional development, effective learning and high standards. We achieve this through visible consistency which is tightened through three simplified core rules:
These are referred to and used regularly by all pupils and staff at all times.
Our aim is to provide an inclusive, calm, quiet atmosphere in the school and to encourage children to move around in a respectful manner. However, our expectations of the children can only be realised through the co-operation and support between home and school. Should any difficulties be encountered, we invite parents to work with us to resolve them. Within school, positive relationships are the collective responsibility of every member of staff and this extends beyond the individual classroom, to cover every child and every area of the school and playground.
We ensure that positive relationships are developed well between all members of The Acorns family by dedicating time to play. Every Monday morning, we hold 'games time' in each class. During this time, pupils and staff play together, developing strong relationships and buidling social skills.
We believe that pupils respond well when they are rewarded. We also believe that rewards support a pupils understanding of the value of showing respectful behaviour. This is evident from the systems of rewards that are in place and in the displays around school. Achievement is celebrated in every classroom and all efforts are valued. This can be seen through our Class Dojo system, House Points System and Celebration Assemblies.
Each week, pupils acorss the school will wake up on Saturday morning to a personalised Suirrel Mail. These are additonal celebrations for pupils who deserve a special mention.
All adults at The Acorns understand how trauma can impact upon an individual in a range of ways. Our aim is that all staff can help pupils to navigate their way through these difficult periods and support them to self-regulate. All staff understand that firm, well communicated boundaries are necessary, but staff are well-trained in developing relationships that are positive and encouraging to enable pupils to improve their conduct. We will never use fear, intimidation or shame when working with a pupil who is demonstrating unwanted behaviours. Staff are enabled to fully incorporate a restorative approach with the pupils they care for. We achieve this by allowing them time, a safe space and further support if needed. We vow to never display behaviours or language which indicates to a child that we have ‘given up’ on them.
We understand that there will be times where our pupils struggle with or are unable to self-regulate. Any negative behaviour is interpreted as an inability to communicate, a lack of understanding or a reaction to a challenge, whether extrinsic or intrinsic, and this may be displayed by a pupil not successfully managing the 3 school rules; ready, respectful and safe.