• PSHE

    PSHE (Personal, Social, Health and Economic)

    PSHE is the study of topics and issues that are central to a positive development of an individual. PSHE enables our children to become healthy, independent and responsible members of society. It aims to help them understand how they are developing personally and socially, as well as tackling and many of the moral, social and cultural issues that are part of growing up. We provide our children with opportunities for them to learn about rights and responsibilities and appreciate what it means to be a member of a diverse society. Our children are encouraged to develop their sense of self-worth by playing a positive role in contributing to school life and the wider community.

    Implementation: How PSHE is taught at Bristol Steiner School

    We deliver the PSHE curriculum by utilising first-hand experience and sharing good practice. It is also every staff member’s responsibility to do this by being a role model and having high expectations of Bristol Steiner pupils. All staff should actively promote, ‘Random Acts of Kindness’ and celebrate these with the children. The whole school actively participates in activities that the Mental Health charity ‘Mind’ has compiled, the ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’ consists of ‘Give’, ‘Connect’, ‘Be Active’, Take notice and Keep Learning. These activities help children to experience and acquire different life-long tools to manage their wellbeing.

    In the Kindergarten the PSHE curriculum is embedded deeply in our curriculum. Like a thread, PSHE runs through each of the daily activities, carefully and purposefully supporting and guiding the emotional and social development of each child. Whilst in a Steiner Kindergarten, children participate in meaningful activities throughout their day, which facilitate and encourage them to build relationships, and to understand how to look after themselves and each other; thus building their social skills, confidence, and self-esteem.


    In KS1 and KS2 we expect teachers to deliver weekly lessons, using the PSHE programme from PSHE Association, to equip pupils with a sound understanding of risk and with the knowledge and skills necessary, and to make safe and informed decisions. The curriculum is split into three core themes of: Health and Wellbeing, Relationships and Living in the Wider World. It is structured around an overarching question for each term or half term. These begin in key stage 1 as ‘What? and ‘Who?’’ questions and build throughout Key Stage 2 into ‘Why?’ and ‘How?’ questions.


    Throughout the programme of study the children should have a good balance of the following overarching concepts:

    · Identity

    · Relationships

    · A healthy, balanced lifestyle,

    · Identification of risk and safety

    · Diversity and equality

    · Rights, responsibilities and consent

    · Change and resilience



    Monitoring and assessment is an on-going process. Teachers use ‘assessment for learning’ as to inform planning for future lessons.

  • PSHE, including Relationships, Health and Drug Education, Policy

  • British Values

    British Values with Prevent Strategy Statement

    British values are defined by the Department for Education as:

    •     democracy
    •     the rule of law
    •     individual liberty
    •     mutual respect and tolerance for those with different faiths and beliefs.

    These are implicitly embedded in Steiner education and the curriculum and ethos of Bristol Steiner School. All staff are expected to uphold and promote these values. Listed below are some of the ways in which staff work with these values at the school.


    Democracy: making decisions together


    Throughout the school, staff will encourage children to see their role as an individual within a bigger social structure, ensuring that the children know their views count, that they value each other’s views and values and are able to talk about their feelings. Class plays, Games and Dancing lessons and Choir as well as many other group activities give plenty of opportunities for children to practise their social skills. On our many class trips, pupils learn to balance their own wish for freedom with the needs of the group.


    The Class 5 curriculum covers the origins of democracy and its importance as a concept and principle.


    In older classes staff can demonstrate democracy in action, for example, by helping a class to agree on a decision through a vote, or holding a mock election to teach students about the electoral system in the UK.


    Staff can support the decisions that children make and provide activities that involve turn-taking, sharing and collaboration. Children should be given opportunities to develop enquiring minds in an atmosphere where questions are valued.


    The rule of law: understanding that rules matter


    Staff will help children to understand their own and others’ behaviour and its consequences, and to distinguish right from wrong. Staff sometimes collaborate with children to create the rules and the codes of behaviour and ensure that all children understand that rules apply to everyone. Our Behaviour and Discipline Policy is of central importance in the school and is explained to the children at the start of each year so that they understand our expectations. Through application of the policy they learn that there are consequences if rules are not followed.


    Games played in the playground are sometimes subject to rules set by adults, but often the rules are developed by the children through negotiation with each other, and we encourage this approach.


    Stories told as part of the curriculum in Classes provide imaginative understanding of moral and social practice, good and evil, justice and redemption.


    Individual liberty: freedom for all


    At Bristol Steiner School we encourage children to develop a positive sense of themselves. Staff can provide opportunities for children to develop their self-knowledge, self-esteem and increase their confidence in their own abilities, for example through allowing them to take appropriate risks, to develop their creative self-expression through music, drama, Eurythmy, art and craft, talking about their experiences and learning through various forms of safe and constructive feedback.


    Staff encourage a range of experiences that allow children to explore the language of feelings and responsibility, reflect on their differences and understand that everyone is free to have different opinions.


    Mutual respect and tolerance: treat others as you want to be treated


    Bristol Steiner School promotes an ethos of inclusivity and tolerance where differing views, faiths, cultures and races are valued and where children are encouraged to engage with the wider community through fairs, festivals and visits in the wider community.


    Children should acquire a tolerance and appreciation of and respect for their own and other cultures; know about similarities and differences between themselves and others and among families, faiths, communities, cultures and traditions and share and discuss practices, celebrations and experiences. We are open to celebrating festivals from all religions at Bristol Steiner School, and often do this with help from parents of pupils with different faiths. All students learn foreign languages from the age of 6, and the curriculum covers cultural aspects as well as the study of the language.


    Staff will encourage and explain the importance of tolerant behaviours such as sharing and respecting other’s opinions. Staff are expected to promote diverse attitudes and challenge stereotypes, for example, sharing stories that reflect and value the diversity of children’s experiences and providing resources and activities that challenge gender, cultural and racial stereotyping.

  • English as an Additional Language

    Bristol Steiner School EAL Policy Statement


    • To promote equality of opportunity for all learners for whom English is an additional language.
    • To deliver a broad, balanced curriculum which reflects the needs of children for whom English is an additional language.
    • To ensure EAL pupils reach their full potential.


    1. To promote academic achievement by grouping EAL pupils according to cognitive level rather than English language level.
    2. To promote and encourage the development of the children’s first languages in order to facilitate concept development in tandem with their acquisition of English.
    3. To provide pupils with access to resources which are age appropriate, at an appropriate language level, and are linguistically and culturally appropriate.
    4. To use key visuals and other strategies to support children’s access to the curriculum.
    5. To ensure that language and literacy are taught within the context of all subjects.
    6. To ensure that learners not yet fluent in spoken English or the language of the curriculum receive planned support for their oracy and literacy skills.
    7. To actively liaise with parents to help them to support their children’s learning.
    8. To facilitate parents’ access to school life through contacts with school reps
    9. To ensure that EAL pupils are assessed in their first language where possible and where appropriate.
    10. To seek first language assessment to ensure the accurate identification of SEN.
    11. To monitor the summative assessments of children with EAL and set targets to address any underachievement identified.
    12. To provide all staff with high-quality professional development to develop their knowledge of EAL pedagogy and their skills for teaching EAL learners.
    13. To celebrate multilingual skills and promote linguistic diversity with all pupils.
  • Physical Education

    How we teach physical education.

    The opportunity to take part in movement and games is absolutely fundamental to a healthy childhood. There is a great deal of research that stresses the importance of physical activity to improve a child’s capacity to learn.


    At Bristol Steiner School there is both integrated and discrete physical education. Integrated physical education includes the movement exercises that come at the beginning of the Main Lessons. The use of rhythm and movement may come into various lessons, such as maths where the pupils, for example may throw and catch beanbags as they recite their times tables. In a foreign language class, pupils might follow a sequence of movement when learning parts of the body.


    Children in Class 1 and 2 focus on circle games, cooperative games, hand clapping rhymes, skipping with a long and individual rope and bean bag exercises developing hand-eye coordination.


    In addition, Class 2 and 3 have a weekly country and folk dancing session, which aids their physical health as well as helping them develop socially, cognitively and rhythmically.


    In Class 3, skipping practise continues with the addition of more complex tricks and tagging games and ball games are introduced.


    In Class 4, ball games and tag games continue, and games with a team goal or competitive relays are introduced.


    In Class 5 there is a progression of team and ball games which develop children’s sports skills. For example ‘space ball’ and ‘bench ball’ focus on passing and moving into spaces and hand-eye coordination. Other games introduce the basics of offence and defence. One of the highlights of Class 5 is attending a traditional Greek Olympic event, where over 400 class 5 pupils attend participating in long jump, high jump, wrestling, relay, mini marathon, discus and javelin.


    Eurythmy is taught from Kindergarten through to the end of school and is an art form, which aims to harmonise the child physical well-being with their feelings or emotions. Regular Eurythmy practice lessons help children to become more coordinated, graceful and alert and to be more at ease with themselves. In the Eurythmy lesson the children move to poetry, prose text and live instrumental music and this experience deepens their aesthetic appreciation of literature and music and complements other aspects of the curriculum. Eurythmy also requires the children to work in groups which develops spatial awareness and a capacity to sense the movements of the group as a whole, while also concentrating on their own movement.

  • Differentiation

    The curriculum is structured so pupils’ differentiated needs can be met. Whole class teaching is combined with individualised and differentiated learning. Imaginative engagement with the lesson material allows all learners, regardless of strengths, weaknesses and learning styles, to work at different levels within their class group. Teaching methods should be flexible enough to give the best vehicle to education for all learning profiles. By first identifying different students’ needs, understanding how to best engage them, and employing a mixture of methods of differentiation, pupils of all abilities will have the best possible opportunity to learn.


    Differentiation is implemented by various methods in all subjects:


    • Flexible pace learning
    • Collaborative learning
    • Progressive tasks
    • Verbal support
    • Variable outcomes
    • Ongoing assessment

    These can be seen by:

    • Using a multi-sensory approach; with visual, aural and kinaesthetic components.
    • Use of the Steiner three-fold strategies of imitation, copying; illustrative work and storytelling; thoughtful comparison and analysis.
    • Using a child-centred approach i.e. responding to each child as an individual.
    • Allowing freedom of response to a lesson, so that pupils can produce very different work to reflect what they have learnt.
    • Using a range of tasks from simple to complex, to allow for different abilities.
    • Using open-ended questions, so there is no wrong answer.
    • Sometimes explaining first and demonstrating after, or demonstrating first and explaining afterwards – allows for different learning preferences.
    • Using different structured tasks, so that some pupils can be set lower or higher targets as necessary.
    • Using text on the blackboard in different colours for different groups of pupils to undertake appropriate tasks.
    • Using mixed ability groups for tasks
    • Using recall both at the end of the lesson and the beginning of the next to anchor information.
    • Using different tasks: for example, writing, listening, speaking, drawing, observation, dictation, reading, questioning. The content is differentially approachable.
    • Each differentiation method is systematic, simple, inclusive and inductive. Each child is helped to contribute in his/her own way to the creation of the whole picture.

    Following Steiner principles, BSS may consider carrying out a ‘Child Study’, a review of a child who needs special consideration, because of learning/ behavioural difficulties, special qualities, or characterises a particular age or stage of development. This takes place in Teacher’s and Staff meetings to build a shared picture of the child which can help our understanding of the child.

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