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Handbook / Teacher's Guide
Over the last 40 years the Coombes School in Berkshire, UK, has developed an international reputation for its innovative approach to Nursery and Infant teaching. In this book Sue Humphries, the founder of the school, and Sue Rowe, the former headteacher, explore the principles behind the school and how others can learn from its approach. In particular, the book focuses on the innovative use of the school's environment as a unique 'outdoor classroom' and the development of a sustainable and safe environment in which pupils can play and learn.The Coombes Approach covers a comprehensive range of topics from curriculum design, pastoral care and the wider policy and community contexts in which the school has operated. Supported by an online resource bank of pictures of the school environment and pupils' activities, this is an essential read for school leaders seeking to learn from the successes of the Coombes School's unique approach to teaching.
1. Introduction and Ethos 2. Leadership Styles and Organisation 3. The Outdoor Classroom: The Soft Landscape 4. The Outdoor Classroom: The Hard Landscape 5. Spiritual Development 6. Science 7. Curriculum: Planning and Organisation, Mathematics, Literacy and the Language Arts, Information and Communications Technology8. Curriculum Continued: History, Geography, Music, Drama, Dance, Physical Education, French, Design Technology, Art and Craft 9. School Traditions 10. In Conclusion References Index
“A group of teachers came together under dynamic leadership - and everyone learned (and continues to learn). Hard work, research, creativity, imagination, innovation, intellect, but mostly children are at the heart of the Coombes' instructional strategies. This school is an incredible oasis - a testament to the power of the importance of actively engaging children in learning about topics that matter in their lives with dedicated, caring, knowledgeable adults who share a passion for the teaching profession and fostering children's social, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual development. By chapter nine, readers will be eager for a guided tour with one of the young child scientists as their interpreter. We learn best when we study with someone who knows more than we do; I learned much from these two authors.” – Carol Vukelich, Bruce L. and L. Sandra Hammonds Professor in Teacher Education, University of Delaware, USA,
“In this book the Coombes School's secrets are clarified in a fantastic and detailed way. It covers the educational policies, programmes and designs, which have been well-known as the most attractive school landscapes in the world for many years. The 'two Sues' demonstrate the value and importance of children-centred education and outdoor classrooms for children's development and lives.” – Ko Senda, Landscape Architect, Environment Design Institute, Tokyo, Japan,