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Highgate Wood Secondary School

This content was written by
Highgate Wood Secondary School
Our school is a mixed gender comprehensive school in North London. We joined to see how we could incorporate essential skills into our careers/life skills programme.
Overall impact
It has been good for the life skills curriculum now we have absorbed careers into our department. Benchmark was good, students appreciate the skills being highlighted as do some teachers.
Keep it simple
Skills posters are in the majority of classrooms. Skills are specifically mentioned in tutor time powerpoints and mentioned by some staff (around 7 are actively using it). Skills are incorporated into some Geography schemes of work. Benchmark is being used in Life Skills lessons with plan for students to check skills twice per year with info sent to tutors. Skills are also mentioned in assemblies where relevant.
Start early, keep going
Every year group gets drop-down days to practice skills. Year 10 doesn't use skills builder ones but they are incorporated into the lessons. Twice a year students update their skills on Benchmark which is reported back to tutors. Then tutor powerpoints incorporate skills. Life skills curriculum uses essential skills as its assessment points.
Measure it
Life skills curriculum has begun to use the essential skills as the basis of their assessments. Students complete benchmark and then will be using it twice per year.
Focus tightly
Tutor powerpoints incorporate skills and in lessons they are focussed on. Drop down days incorporate the skills too. Terminology is also referred to in letters to students.
Keep practising
Projects from Skills Builder have been used this year. This helped lessons to incorporate the essential skills.
Bring it to life
Skills referenced in extra-curricular clubs e.g. travel leaders and duke of Edinburgh. Projects from Skills Builder have been used this year to help pupils see how these skills are useful for outside the classroom.
What's next
We will use the skills in life skills to build assessment points. We will continue use of benchmark to identify students current ability for tutors to use. We will continue to highlight the skills to encourage other departments to use them.
Greater London
United Kingdom