Although there is no specific grading criteria for development in SMSC, OFSTED still grade a school with either: Outstanding, Good, Satisfactory or Poor in relation to their promotion and implementation of SMSC values. It is therefore important that schools focus on instilling good values within these areas throughout the curriculum and not just leaving the teaching of SMSC to a 30 minute lesson per week whilst everyone is sat on the carpet.
There are plenty of opportunities to development SMSC within curriculum subjects, RE, Science and Creative Arts to name a few more appropriate subjects, but there is a place for SMSC within each and every subject if the teacher is strong enough in their own knowledge of the areas and creative enough to install them within the lessons they teach on a day-to-day basis. Former Home Secretary David Blunkett shared that “The vast majority of people in our society, regardless of their ethnic background, want the same thing for themselves and their children. Although he gave little to no evidence to support this claim, I feel not many people would disagree with the statement he made. It is from this shared viewpoint that Mr. Blunkett believes we all share, which emphasis on Community Cohesion is formed; allowing more experienced members of the community surrounding schools to help with the teaching of SMSC and not solely leaving its teaching with the designated class teacher. Furthermore, I believe that it is through this sense of unity and togetherness that children develop emotionally as well as spiritually, morally, socially and culturally, providing them with a stable well-being nd good attributes and attitudes to aid them in their development as human beings. This idea was restated within the Education Act of 2002 where it says “It is clearly recognised that there is more to life than achieving high standards in academic subjects. ” Although this comment may be true; the acquisition of characteristics gained through SMSC development would greatly increase a child’s development within the subjects in which it can be found.
... supplements, magnets, fast tracks, slow tracks, team teaching, school-within-a-school, and every variation of all the above and more ... training, and values clarification lessons as proof that schools are not teaching as much material as the used to. Furthermore ... levels are highest when it comes to educational matters (curriculum, teaching, etc. ) and lowest in peripheral areas (food, sports, ...
This is to say, that a child’s ability to become a “good human being, purposeful and wise, themselves with a vision of what it is to be a human” (Ofsted, 2004, pg. 5) can reflect directly upon their development academically. So whether academia should be seen as more, or less important than development within the SMSC areas, it can certainly be seen within schools that SMSC has positive effects on both the mind, as well as the heart and soul.
spiritual development within the academic setting does not necessarily mean the same thing as spiritual development as a general term. Although it can mean the understanding of religious beliefs and worship, it also has less deity orientated meaning. The School Curriculum and Assessment Authority (1996) defined spirituality as a list of things, one of the most appropriate in my opinion as being: “the sense of identity and self worth which enables us to value others”.
This was put into practice within a local school through the use of self and peer assessment. At the beginning of an English lesson based on poetry, an exemplar piece of work (often a famous poet such as Wordsworth, Cummings or Ted Hughes) was read to the children before they started their own work. During this introduction, the children were asked to discuss with each other their opinions and likes of the poem, whereby learning appreciation of the work and gaining an understanding of its value and the value which the poets holds to us.
At the end of the lesson, this process was repeated but not with the original exemplar, but with a few pieces of the children’s own work which the children volunteered to be read aloud. This approach to teaching was not solely used within English, but transcended across all subject areas (picking out favourite parts or expressing love of specific areas within the work of others) and is therefore strongly representing spiritual development not only throughout the curriculum, but also throughout the day. The way of access spiritual development through academic study has a direct impact on the child’s well-being.
... Cooperative Learning: Listening to how children work at school In this study the researchers were ... their science classes and the library before the work sessions started. In total at the end ... mechanics of their selected systems. The 11 work secessions over the-five week study were recorded ... simple model that demonstrates how the mechanical system works; the model should be displayed on cardboard no ...
This was seen after looking at the children’s expressions when their work was being read aloud, and when their peers were sharing their admiration for their creation. This gave the children higher self-esteem, willingness and participate and greater self-worth. But the impact did not just end their, it also have a positive effect academically. During this feedback/appreciation of their work, some children in class 5 in the school were seen to annotate their work after they had been given it back, based on the response of the other pupils.
This self evaluative skill strongly benefits a child’s development as they learn to recognise room for improvement before they finish their work and can adapt and changed, solely from thinking what a group of appreciative people would think, perhaps feeling that in order to provide them with a greater sense of appreciated value. A summary of this idea that spiritual development has a great positive impact is shared by Eaude (2003, pg. 24) when stating that “Enabling children to be reflective – encourages spiritual experience and greater self understanding. Ironically – these may be the key to raising academic standards too. Furthermore, this has a direct link to the Statement of Values; under the heading of ‘The Self’ where it states that on the basic of such values, we should “Develop an understanding of our own characters, strengths, and weaknesses” and also under the Relationships heading to “Respect other, including children” and “Show others they are valued”. In order to value ourselves and others, we need a code by which to value them, to see whether they should be praised openly or whether discussion need to be held in case of disagreements, disputes or differences of opinion.
... / she is the child. 10. Get involved in school efforts and community programs to plan for gifted children - support the school's efforts to plan ... humour. Have a highly developed moral and ethical sense. Resent the violation of structure and rules.Possess an emotional depth and ... to be continually challenged and should be given opportunities to work both independently and in a group. They need a ...
It is for this reason that the government feels that teaching children to develop morally as well as spiritually, is vital. Within the Handbook for Inspecting Secondary Schools (1999), a set of morals or rules or expected behaviours were not highlighted but instead, emphasis on the “Essence of Morality” was prescribed when saying: “a framework of moral values which regulate personal behaviour…through teaching and promoting principles rather than through reward or fear of punishment. ”
This idea that a pre-designated set of rules, which cut across all places which differ socially, culturally and spiritually, could ever be formulated is itself highly implausible and therefore the notion to promote the essence of morality instead of pre requisites for morality is greatly beneficial, not only to the children within school, but also to the wider community. However, through several observations within school settings, specifically the next example, the ‘essence’ appears to be getting lost somewhere along the way.
A reception class in School A had a set of classroom rules which they adhered to throughout their time in the classroom, and a set of school rules which they adhered to at all times within school. Such examples were ‘Respect other people and their belongings’, ‘Do not show anger to other children’ and ‘Always listen to the teacher’. (I noticed that this school as well as others, appeared to model their rules on the 10 commandments, regardless of whether it was a faith school or not, like School A) Failure to comply with these rules and persistent breaking of teachers commands (e. . sit down and listen to me, stop talking, settle down) resulted in child sitting on a ‘time-out’ chair. Sitting quietly with arms folded, answering questions politely and being patient were rewarded with stickers or stamps. Although this sense of positive or negative reinforcement may well get a well drilled class, it does not fall in line with the previous definition of teaching morality, as it specifically says “through teaching and promoting principles rather than through reward or fear of punishment. (Ofsted, 1999, pg. 68) This way of attempting to teach morality in schools has a negative impact on children’s academic development, as they may be too scared of thinking of innovative ideas to present or write work in case they are disciplined for it. But not only this, it also affects their well-being; children being affected badly by being psychologically programmed to carry out certain behaviours and avoid others, much like Pavlov’s Dogs.
... includes the counselor. The team assesses exactly what losses have occurred to the child and what ... supporting the child can be very beneficial to bereavement counseling. This team has members from: the family, school and ... Goldman, 2004). References Goldman, Linda. (2004). Counseling with children within contemporary society. Journal of Mental Health Counseling, Volume 26 ...
However, I did witness some good practice and the previous example may just have been an anomaly. Within a year 1 class in School M, their classroom rules were written by the pupils themselves, and seen almost as a contract which they all signed at the beginning of the school year, and again half-termly to show their understanding and acceptance of their own ideas for moral goodness. This not only made the children think for themselves about the rights and wrongs within everyday life, but how to live alongside each other in harmony.
This is highlighted in the statement of values under heading Relationships: care for others and exercise goodwill in our dealings with them” and to “work cooperatively with others”. Although in this example; moral development is undertaken and fostered by the children as individuals and as their own little society, there is still a highly valued role for the adult according to Ofsted (2004, pg. 15) when stating “Teachers have a significant responsibility for moral education. They inevitably define, for their pupils, standards of behaviour in the classroom and around school. This is to say that they too follow the rules of the classroom and act as role models for the children. Children look up to adults as extensions of themselves in the future and it is therefore important that adults show these young children how to be morally good human beings and citizens; and should children need a few subtle hints within moral development when they are coming close to disruption, instead of punishing the child, “teachers engage pupils in thinking about their responsibilities when issues arise. ”(OFSTED 2004, p. 15)
When fostering good social skills within children; it is important to note that there are, in my opinion, two very clear sides to doing this: social interactions with other pupils (internal) and social interactions with the wider community (external).
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As a school, it is important to make these strong links with the community so they are not seen as ‘external’ to the school, but rather an ‘extension’ of the school which can provide valuable resources. If schools instil this idea within children, it will “encourage puplils to take responsibility, show initiative and develop an understanding of living in a community. (Ofsted, 1999, pg. 73) This sense of community cohesion within school was seen very strongly in my last placement school as it had a very small catchment area and had a very warm and local feel to it. This was strongly evidenced through an initiative they had called ‘Community Challenges’. This initiative focused on getting members of the community into the school to spend some time with the younger generation and not only learn from each other, but just to learn to know the people that are around you.
Parents and relatives of children at the school and community members within a 2mile radius or so were invited into the school once every half term on a Friday afternoon to carry out a challenge. Whilst I was there, the challenge was to make a toy car which would be raced down a ramp in the school hall, points given for distance, accuracy and aesthetics. Community members were assigned groups to ensure a mix of skills and age ranges and also so everyone got a chance to meet new people. The impact which this had on the community as a whole and not just the children was clearly evident from the general atmosphere of the event.
The children’s well-being was strongly developed due to the different backgrounds of people the children were meeting; instead of normally getting help from the same teachers and classroom assistants. It clearly seemed evident that they were absorbing the essence of community into themselves during this whole process and subsequently after the evident when sharing knowledge they had received from the people in their group. This obviously shows their development of academic skills too as per the nature of the task (group work).
Ofsted (2003, pg. 7) states that: “pupils who are socially aware adjust appropriately and sensitively to a range of social contexts. They relate well to others and work successfully as a member of a team. ” This is further backed up by several theorists, all of whose research stems from Vygotsky’s theory of the Zone of Proximal Development which states that more able others can extend the learning of children or less able through questioning, guiding, suggesting or critiquing. This embodiment of Social development has strong links with the statement of values in all 4 areas.
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In Relationships – ‘respecting others, care for others and earn loyalty, trust and confidence. Society – support families of different kinds, refuse to support values or actions that may be harmful to individuals or communities, The Self – make responsible use of our talents, rights and opportunities, strive throughout life for knowledge, wisdom and understanding and finally in The Environment – accept our responsibility to maintain a sustainable environment for future generations (although this may be talking about the natural environment, I feel it is important to see it as our social/human environment also).
Social development and community cohesion is one of the most key areas within teaching I feel; as said by Ofsted (2004, p. g. 19) “The quality of our relationships defines the kind of people we are and, ultimately, the kind of world we live in. The final area within SMSC development is Cultural development, and although it is an area to be promoted independently, it is also deeply rooted throughout the other areas.
Furthermore, in a world of ever increasing ethnic and religious diversity, it is highly important to “enable young people to embrace and understand cultural diversity by bringing them into contact with attitudes, values and traditions of other cultures. ” (DfEE and DCMS, 1999, pg. 48) Much like when Ofted (2003) stated that the teaching of the “Essence of Morality” rather than the rules within our society should take president, they again share a similar belief within cultural development when saying it “recognises that cultures are always changing and growing; they are never static.
Therefore, cultural development must go beyond just learning the norms and skills of a group of people; it also involves understanding the processes of cultural development and change and an appreciation of the inter-dependence of different cultures. ” (Ofsted, 2004, pg. 23) There was a wide variety of examples within school of the appreciation and development of different cultures and cultural beliefs as I was within the school during Divali, Chinese New Year, Christmas and the lead up to Easter.
As well as these special festivals, cultural diversity was recognised daily through the simple act of getting the children to answer the register in a different language. This promoted the awareness of different cultures and every time a new greeting was shown during the register, it was noted down on the board by the teacher and in the following weeks it was explored through books in English, counting in Math and Exploration in Art, DT and RS. At this particular school I was very lucky to have such a mix of cultures, including a large number of Polish and Czech children and a few Malasian and Chinese children.
The well being of the children of different children was excellent as they were seen almost as a ‘portal’ to a part of the world the other children (and staff members) had never had much understanding of; and the well being of the children experiencing this new found information was greatly shown through their ‘awe and wonder’ of the class’s diversity. This accepted cultural diversity greatly impacted on their academic development, specifically within the Creative Arts and English due to the increased imagination capacity they now held having no longer been restricted the singularity of British culture.
Within the Statement of values, cultural diversity and development can be linked with several areas, including: Society – respect religious and cultural diversity and contribute to, as well as benefit fairly from, economic and cultural resources; Relationships – respect others, care for others and exercise good will and The Environment – preserve balance and diversity in nature where ever possible.
In evaluation, the implementation of SMSC within the education system impacts children’s well being and academic development SO strongly, that the absence of SMSC would be a great loss not just to the children, but also to the wider community, and the future generations. All aspects within SMSC interlink, forming a web of rich nourishment which covers the EYFS, NC and school life in general. Furthermore, although these areas are different in many ways, they are also remarkably close that should ou even want to, you could not help but develop a child’s appreciation of culture when teaching them through Social development; nor could you develop a child’s spiritual attitudes without making them think about their moral attitudes also. It is important to remember though, that it is the job of the adults to foster and nurture these areas of development, not just because it positively affects the children in many areas including academic progression, but because it shapes them as human beings.
To finish with a quote from a discussion paper on Spiritual and Moral development (1993) “Without curiosity, without the inclination to question, and without the exercise of imagination, insight and intuition, young people would lack the motivation to learn, and their intellectual development would be impaired. ” Reference List: Department for Education (DFE),(2011) Improving the spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development of pupils : non-statutory guidance for independent schools. EAUDE, T. New Perspectives on Spiritual Development, National Primary Trust, 2003.
Education for Adult Life: The spiritual and Moral Development of Young People, London, SCAA, 1996 Handbook for Inspecting Nursery and Primary Schools, Ofsted, 2003. Handbook for Inspecting Secondary Schools, Ofsted, 2003. OFSTED. Promoting and evaluating pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, 2004. Spiritual and Moral Development – A Discussion Paper, York. National Curriculum Council, 1993 Statement of values by the National Forum for Values in Education and the Community, QCA, London, 1999