The Compass Course at Arnold House aims to encourage independent learning in Years 5 & 6. The theory is that independent learning succeeds because it focuses the pupils on the process of learning. It is essential that they reflect on their successes and mistakes in a way that enables the pupils to learn from them. Group dialogue, teacher facilitation and problem solving all have key roles to play. During Compass, boys work in collaborative groups. These vary in composition, where mixed ability and different learning styles provide added challenge and value to the learning experience. By working collaboratively students are able to share and recognise talents. Research indicates that pupils working in groups enjoy learning more, work harder thanks to mutually supportive motivation and attain at higher levels.
The aims of The Compass Course:
- To encourage independent study and autonomous learning
- To encourage the use of thinking skills programmes and approaches to learning
- To promote collaborative group work
- To develop project management skills
- To develop research skills and make optimum use of information sources
- To encourage effective communication of knowledge and ideas
- To promite links with other areas of the curriculum
- To use IT to produce real and relevant outcomes
The objective of The Compass Course:
- Collaborative and cooperative group work: The pupils' ability to work in groups of 3 to 5.
- Individual responsibility: The ability of individuals to complete tasks and support others.
- Pupil-designed tasks: Pupils need to plan their own projects within the stated area of focus.
- Pupil-designed assessment: Pupils are responsible for setting their own achievable targets.
- Pupil-initiated research: Pupils set their own research brief.
- Pupil-negotiated deadlines: Groups need to pace their work within the time frame allowed for the whole project.
- Pupil-use of a range of IT: pupils have access to the use of the latest technology available which will develop their technical expertise.
- A sense of audience: Pupils have teh opportunity to develop their communication sills by feeding back to the groups.
- Presentation in different forms: Pupils present their projects in various forms, including presentations, leaflets, websites, posters, information sheets, painting and animations which allows them to play to thier strengths and realise that written word has its limitations.