BESA,we hear fromLEXONIK, creators Thismonth, in our ongoing feature hig

hlighting thework ofmembers of the UK education suppliers’ trade body of the Lexonik Advance literacy programme; and JOLLY BACK,

manufacturers of ergonomic chairs for teachers.

With the right approach, it’s’s possible to transformliteracy short

cy skills in a very most challenged re

rt space of time – even for the readers

The link between literacy and life outcomes is well known. Literacy skills, specifically reading, spelling and vocabulary, are the golden thread of student achievement, in every subj

bject. Without a fast, effective and systematic approach for the teaching

of these essential life skills, teachers are increasingly faced with classes a wide spectrum of reading ages and the absence of a dation.

firm literacy foun of students with

With the right approach, it is absolutely possible to transform literacy skills in a very short space of time; even for the most challenged readers, from KS2 to adulthood, including those who fit the Dyslexia profile and for whom English is not their first language. Lexonik’s core mission is to provide the essential training and resources which will enable transformational outcomes for student literacy.

On average, from students experiencing our Lexonik Advance programme, we see reading age gains of 27 months in just six one- hour sessions. Lexonik Advance is a unique, research-based programme leveraging metacognition, repetition, decoding and automaticity whilst training learners to develop phonological awareness, make links between unknown words using common prefix, root word and suffix definitions.

Blackpool is undoubtably an area with many challenges to face in terms of social mobility and ensuring positive life outcomes. But, our partnership with Right to Succeed and the Blackpool KS3 Literacy Project has shown that systematic literacy teaching is particularly powerful in when embedded within the curriculum.

Since September 2018, we have trained over 40 teachers and support staff across 9 Blackpool secondary schools in the Lexonik Advance programme. This cohort of staff, funded through an ‘Opportunity Areas’ grant and Right to Succeed, have then been able to provide their students with the specialist literacy intervention necessary

To date the KS3 students participating in the proj to ensure rapid and dramatic transformation.

oject have achieved

reading age gains of up to 31 months across the 9 schools. And these schools haven’t stopped there. The Blackpool schools, which includes St Mary’s Research School, Fylde Coast Academy Trust schools and South Shore Academy, have expanded their use of Lexonik Advance to KS2 and KS4 students bringing the total student number to over 1600! The schools have also found that having such a large number of staff trained in specialist reading, vocabulary and spelling skills has significantly impacted throughout all aspects of school life, way beyond the intervention lesson time.

Simon Eccles, Headteacher at StMary’s Catholic Academy has found that: “Lexonik has added a vital strand to our literacy project. The Lexonik Advance intervention has allowed students to explore how they use and understand key vocabulary and to approach new words with more confidence. In addition to this we have been able to work with

more on key vocabulary within their teaching across the curriculum.” our whole staff body to help them to adapt their pedagogy to focus

Imagine what a difference that made to learning, teaching and confidence in every classroom?

To find outmore about howyour school can adopt the Lexonik approach visitww

14 or speak to us on 01642 424298. ry

Howeliminating back pain in teachers is improving outcomes for children

“Working with schools as a physiotherapist is a

variation in terms of musculoskeletal health due privilege but it’s the sector where I see most

to the nature of teaching” says Lorna Taylor, Founder of Jolly Back

“For example, supporting primary teachers in their mid-20s after back surgery, early years teachers who are awaiting knee replacement, teachers with neck and head aches from poorly set up technology and secondary teachers not sure how they can co retirement age due to the physically and men

tally demands of the job”. ntinue working until

Teaching, be it early years, primary, secondary or further education, places enormous physical demands on your body, day in day out and yet knowing how to keep your back, neck and other joints, together with your muscles pain and injury free seems to be kept secret. Back care, posture awareness, role specific moving and handling training, occupational health and workstation risk assessment are not the norm in teacher training or working practice and as such there is a high incidence of musculoskeletal discomfort and injury, much of which is accepted as part of the job, self-managed and under-reported. The good news is positive change is simple to implement and effective. Research consistently shows health promotion and ill-health

prevention are the most beneficial for employees and employers in terms of wellbeing, productively and return on investment.

For the teaching profession, where children's learning and educational outcomes are affected by the quality of teaching they receive, the benefits of having a healthy, productive, happy team are even more far reaching.


most impact, prevention measures can benefit both. Design” Award has commended BESAMember, Jolly Back.

Did you knowMusculoskeletal health and emotional health are There are clear, direct links between physical and mental health, so for The Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) “Risk Reduction Through A collaboration with Trent Infant and Nursery School involved trialling

ergonomically designed low seating in classrooms, together with training to raise awareness of posture and musculoskeletal conditions associated with low height working, and an early reporting system for cumulative strain injury (aches and pains which come on Judges were “pleased to see an entry that

addressed a “forgotten” over time).

area/group in a sector with endemic musculoskeletal issues. The application of good ergonomic design to ensure functionality and worker comfort was recognised. This was reflected in the feedback from users and impact on the school”.

School BusinessManager, Janet Humpherson said “No-one has been off with back or knee pain since first investing in Jolly Back chairs.We say morale has increased rs are a very reasonable

even further since our collaboration. The chai have a supportive culture, but I can definitely

cost as they’re stopping staff going off sick.

“I’d not really thought about musculoskeletal pain prior knowing about Jolly Back, staff used to say they were fine in the holidays but when they got back to school they had back and knee pain within a few days and we didn’t really think or pinpoint the cause. We are much more aware and open about it and have a reporting system in place for early reporting, so any future issues are addressed quickly”. Executive Head, JackieMoss commented: “Fundamentally this collaboration has helped improve the quality and consistency of our teaching and we are very pleased with the positive impact it’s had on the everyday work and life of our teachers.

Formore info

formation and practical tips, please see com

March 2020

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