Stalybridge school uses puppet characters to enhance learning

Arts & Education

PUPILS at a Tameside school have four new friends to help them get the best out of learning.

Stalyhill Infant School, Stalybridge, uses puppet characters – Thinking Theo, Keep Going Kate, Teamwork Tina and Reflective Ravi – in class to embody the skills and qualities children need to be successful learners.

The strategy has proven so effective that it has won recognition from Ofsted.
Inspectors, who recently rated the school as good, recognised the puppets were helping the pupils to be “super-learners” and develop “an excellent attitude to learning”.
Headteacher Lisa Lockett said: “The puppets have been a really effective and child-friendly way of introducing the qualities of a successful learner to the pupils. Because they are ‘people’ the children have been able to identify with them and then spot those skills and qualities in themselves.”
Oftsed Inspectors also praised the school for its strong and transparent leadership, consistently good-quality teaching and learning and for providing pupils with a memorable educational experience.
The report told how parents appreciated the school’s warm and welcoming approach and had commented that “pupils bounced out of bed” to come to school in the morning.
Lisa said: “We have worked extremely hard in the last 12 months to drive learning forward at Stalyhill Infants, not only to be a school that nurtures and cares for our children but one that develops them as independent and resilient learners, giving them skills that will benefit them throughout their lives.
“We are extremely aspirational for our children and it is that aspiration that drives us to provide the best opportunities, the highest quality teaching and the widest experiences that we can offer.
“The Ofsted report is a fantastic endorsement for the whole community -  staff, parents, governors and our feeder junior school - and shows how well all stakeholders have worked together and continue to work together to bring about the very best educational experiences for the children of Stalyhill. I am very proud to be part of such an excellent team.”
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