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Semi Formal

What We Do

The Semi Formal Curriculum caters for our pupils’ with either Severe Learning Difficulties (SLD)  or Moderate Learning Difficulties (MLD). In addition some pupils may also be diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC) or Social, Emotional and Mental Health needs (SEMH).

Pupils typically join us in our primary classes of at the beginning of their secondary education in year 7.  

The semi-formal curriculum is designed to deliver a personalised learning approach based on:

  • becoming literate communicators;
  • becoming mathematical thinkers;
  • the development of thinking skills;
  • play (emotional, cognition and social dimensions);
  • creative learning;
  • movement.

The curriculum is built around a range of National Curriculum subjects using a topic based approach (see the curriculum topic map). EHCP targets are central to each pupil’s learning journey. Personalised planning ensures differentiation and learning being matched to pupil’s abilities and needs. Teachers utilise their specialised subject knowledge to teach foundation subjects such as Music; Religious Education; Personal, Social, Health and Citizenship Education; Drama; Modern Foreign Languages, Art and Technology.

Semi-formal learners can struggle with all areas of thinking:

  • cognition (thinking and understanding)
  • problem solving (acting upon understanding)
  • metacognition (thinking about thinking).

They can have difficulties with, for example, sensory processing and perceiving sensory patterns, memory, generalising and problem solving.

Our learners like order, structure, routine and certainty in their learning. The challenge is to provide opportunities for the learners to think and problem solve as independently as possible. This ensures all have a highly personalised approach to learning, enabling pupils to make very good progress.  

The teachers and support staff set appropriately challenging targets.  

Every class has a weekly life skills trip into the community which helps pupils develop independence skills such as understanding and using money, road safety and using public transport.  

All pupils are accustomed to the following certainties where we:

  • Develop pupils’ independence 
  • Have high expectations of all our pupils
  • Ensure all pupils engaged in their learning.
  • Encourage and develop positive relationships
  • Personalise learning to challenge pupils and help them overcome their barriers to learning.

Purple class (SEMH Provision) certainties

  • A restorative ethos 
  • Every interaction is a learning opportunity
  • Affective language used
  • Accessible learning, recognising our pupils’ needs   
  • Ensuring that our pupils can achieve
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