As a school we are committed to using the THRIVE approach, an approach which draws on neuroscientific research, attesting that the brain’s ability to learn, make connections and cope with stress and anxiety is highly dependent on the neurological pathways that are formed in early life. The first three years of a child’s life is a time when the brain develops rapidly. The relationships, life events and emotional experiences that an individual experiences determine the neural connections that form and are vital in shaping social and emotional development. As a result of gaps in these key areas of early development our children do not have the appropriate foundations to build on when accessing more formal learning and we therefore ensure that we design our curriculum in a way which allows children to access the significant tool of play.

The Thrive approach is informed by developments in neuroscientific research and underpinned by a theoretical base in child development theory, attachment theory, Transactional Analysis, creativity, play and the Arts. All teachers are trained as THRIVE practitioners and we have a dedicated THRIVE team, with one practitioner directly linked to our department. The Thrive approach is used to support social and emotional wellbeing and allows us to provide individual and group activities which have a huge impact on the development of emotional resilience within our children, leading onto a readiness for learning.

Each term we assess our children as a group and, where necessary, work 1-1 with selected children to try to fill developmental gaps using a specific Action Plan developed for the group/individual. Records of the assessments and activities can be found in each child’s Personalised Learning Plan (PLP) folder.

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