Vertical Teaching in Phase 2
The aim of all staff at Royds Hall's is for all students to achieve their potential. Following the highly successful implementation of vertical tutoring we felt that the next natural development for Royds Hall would be explore the potential of vertical teaching in order to personalise the curriculum to enhance the quality of learning for all our students.
The abolition of KS3 SATs provided the ideal opportunity to restructure our curriculum into two distinct phases, Phase 1 (Years 7 and 8) and Phase 2 (Years 9, 10 and 11) and to move to from 30 fifty minute to 25 one hour lessons. The structure proposed was for all Phase 2 students to complete a GCSE option subject in one year, with teaching time of six hours per week. time would be allocated in two three-hour blocks. Students from Years 9, 10 and 11 would be taught in a vertical teaching group, opting for a subject through the options process This would enable students to choose a new subject each year as they mature and their interests and career ambitions develop, resulting in three subjects being completed over Years 9, 10 and 11, taught in vertical (mixed age) groups and completed in one year.
Opportunities identified through vertical option teaching:
- Students are able to personalise their own curriculum as they grow develop and mature by opting for subjects three times during Phase 2 instead of once at the beginning of Year 9,
- The benefits for practical subjects of three hour teaching blocks.
- Increased student motivation and less disengagement through completion of a full GCSE in one year.
- Curriculum areas are able to offer a much wider range of subjects as the subjects offered by departments can change each year.
- The long block teaching over two days provides opportunities for employment of part-time staff to deliver subjects that would otherwise not be offered.
- Less pressure when students reach Year 11 as they will have already completed two GCSE Options.
We aim to make the option process a very positive experience for both students and parents/carers. A comprehensive Phase 2 information booklet is produced with detailed information on all the subjects that will be studied in Phase 2. Parents/Carers and students are encouraged to attend the Options Evening in which all subjects are showcased and students and parents/carers are able to talk to staff and ask any questions that may arise from the information booklet. All Year 8 students are given the opportunity to attend workshops to sample the different subjects available. All students then have a one-to-one guidance interview with a senior member of staff in order to complete the options process.at Parents are welcome to attend these interviews.
We are now in second year of vertical teaching and our first set of results are very promising.