Horton Park Primary School, part of the Exceed Academies Trust, in Bradford East took part in the 2022 pilot of Oracy in Action. Thirty-seven languages are spoken at the school which is situated in one of the most disadvantaged areas of Bradford. The majority of students have a South-East Asian heritage.
Deputy Headteacher and English lead at Horton Park Primary School, Laura Naylor, said ‘Since we introduced Oracy in Action, we have definitely seen the positive impact amongst our pupils, particularly our Year 6 pupils who have developed in confidence over the programme. They are now more confident in articulating their viewpoints. Oracy in Action has demonstrated that there is impact being shown over time too, for example, a pupil who was reserved and shy, volunteered for the Shakespeare in Schools project for a lead role!’
Zakir Rehman, a Key Stage Two Teacher at the School, said: ‘From a practical point of view I really liked the delivery. There was no extra workload for the teachers, the PowerPoints were all prepared and lesson plans were already made. The aim is to see oracy as part of everything and integrated into everything. The quality resources were well considered and pitched for all pupils, regardless of ability or needs.’
Zakir added: ‘I have seen many other benefits, within the classroom and beyond. The pupils are able to effectively express themselves about how they’re feeling. They can also share opinions, listen to one another and disagree politely. It can be used across the curriculum for discussion and debates.’
Annabel Thomas MacGregor, Director of Education at the English-Speaking Union said: ‘Our survey has found that too many children and young people are struggling to make friends or express how they feel because they don’t education because they haven’t had the opportunity to develop the speaking and listening skills (oracy) or gain the self-confidence for effective social skills which are a foundation for life. Oracy in Action has been designed as a complete oracy curriculum for Key Stages 1 and 2 with comprehensive, ready to go lesson plans and all supporting materials and resources. Following excellent feedback from the pilot we are delighted to make the programme available to schools nationally.”