Transition Made Easy for New Starters

September 2017


At Winmarleigh Hall students take on the challenge of the Zip Wire among other outdoor activities.

Thanks to our well-established Transition Programme, the move from Primary to Secondary school is easy for our new starters.

Many of our Year 7s will already have visited King James whilst in Years 5 and 6. Hundreds of primary pupils attend our annual Year 5 Curriculum Week event and we also provide a host of opportunities throughout the year for primary pupils to take part in taster sessions in an array of subjects. Other events, such as our Primary Shakespeare Festival, give us the opportunity to work with primary pupils on fantastic educational projects.

Students joining us in Year 7 benefit from a proven Transition Programme which ensures they are confident about attending King James from day one. The programme involves taster days in school in July to make sure they know what to expect from lessons and a fun Summer School during the holiday.

This year, in addition to this, pupils took part in a leading-edge PiXL transition programme. The "No Wasted Weeks' programme, which supports transition from Key Stage 2 to Key Stage 3 in English and Mathematics, saw our new starters attend King James every Thursday, following their SATs, to take part in a variety of engaging academic and social learning activities. As a result of the programme's success, Mr Longstaff, Assistant Headteacher has been asked to present an overview of our work at a national conference in London.

Each year, our Summer School provides two days of activities in school, followed by a free three-day adventure holiday to Winmarleigh Hall in Lancashire. This year, it began with a behind-the-scenes tour of Kynren, which gave students access to areas that are not available to the public. This was a real treat as children were able to see the complexities of the set, try on the costumes and meet some of the animals that are part of the show.

Back in school, students then took part in lots of fun activities themed around the 1980s; they discovered the music and fashion of the decade and played classic games such as Connect 4, Buckaroo and Operation. Other team building activities included a game of It's A Knockout and a creative session making Brazilian carnival floats and banners.

Finally, 70 students travelled to Winmarleigh Hall and together, they conquered a variety of outdoor challenges including Zip Wire, Raft Building and the Climbing Wall. This gave them all a network of new friends and confidence in their ability to succeed when faced with new challenges.