At Castle Hill Primary School, we are passionate about our two mottos - ‘Manners Matter’ and ‘Aiming For Excellence’. In 2016, we began our journey using High Performance Learning (HPL) to help embed our values across the school, and equip every child with the behaviours and skills needed to be a successful learner.
What is HPL?
HPL was founded by Professor Deborah Eyre, and is a research-led organisation that is passionate about every child achieving excellence. There are 10 Values, Attitudes and Attributes (VAAs), which are the behaviours that lead to a successful learner. At Rooksdown, these are represented as animals whilst at Greenbank, they are represented as superheroes. You can find a copy of the images the children use below, or collect a paper copy from reception at both sites.
In school, the children also use Advanced Cognitive Performance characteristics (ACPs), which act as their ‘thinking toolkit’.
What does this look like in School?
At school, children are encouraged and rewarded for showing the VAAs and ACPs. All classes use ClassDojo to award points and share excellent examples of work and behaviour with parents. ClassDojo is free to use, and all parents can speak to their child’s class teacher to be provided with a unique activation code. ClassDojo can work on a computer, as well as an app for smartphones. Some of our parents have even used the app to create their own reward system at home (although there is an in-app charge for this feature). The children thoroughly enjoy this reward system and value the feedback, especially when it is shared with their parents!
In celebration assemblies on a Friday, we have a special award called ‘Learner of the Week’. This award was created to specifically praise the use of VAAs and ACPs in school.
Finally, at Greenbank, the children often learn and sing superhero ‘theme songs’, using song lyrics that reflect each superhero attitude. The children love suggesting songs that they believe represents the superheroes and it has helped them deepen their understanding of each VAA. Our children are extremely powerful singers, and many staff members and parents have been moved to tears by some of the songs!
How Can I Help at Home?
By encouraging the same learning behaviours at home, you will be supporting your child’s positive mindset - they will believe in their own abilities, become more confident in their learning and see that they can achieve if they work hard. As well as downloading the ClassDojo app, a helpful parent guide can also be found below or in reception at both sites.
HPL Top Tips for Parents
The Impact on Castle Hill Primary School
We have worked hard to ensure all children are supported to achieve excellence, and in October 2019, both Rooksdown and Greenbank were presented with a global HPL award. We were proudly named the first county school to be awarded ‘World Class Status’.
We truly believe that our children are becoming more confident in themselves, that it’s OK to make mistakes in order to move forwards and that they are inspired by and enjoy learning here at Castle Hill.
An interview with our very own Miss Wyers:
The Parliamentary Review
To add to an award-winning year the school was also selected for publication in this year’s prestigious Parliamentary Review. The Parliamentary Review is a guide to industry best practice, including the Primary Education sector.
To read our exceptional publication please visit: https://www.theparliamentaryreview.co.uk/organisations/castle-hill-primary-school