Hartsholme Academy in Lincoln named as nation's most innovative primary school
Transforming a classroom into an American cafe and a World War two living room are not part of your standard school curriculum.
But for Lincoln's Hartsholme Academy their visionary way of thinking has put them top of the class in the whole country.
They have just won an award for being the most innovative primary school in England – six years after being given a U for unsatisfactory by Ofsted.
It completes a remarkable turnaround for the staff and headteacher Carl Jarvis whose work was deemed outstanding by inspectors in 2011.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
And Mr Jarvis said putting the needs of pupils first was key to the school's success at the Education Innovation Awards.
Head teacher Carl Jarvis said: "Our research found sitting pupils in groups of 30 behind desks in a classroom wasn't the most effective way to teach.
"We changed the environment to more immersive learning, changing the environment so the children are learning in a more tactile way.
"We started to plan lessons differently too.
"We started looking at the child's needs first, what engages them and makes them tick, and designing activities around that. Then we'd fit the curriculum around that. Our children make outstanding progress because we're concentrating on them.
"Some of the most innovative things we've done have been in the context of the classroom.
"For example, our Year 5s and 6s have been learning about September 11 and the Twin Towers, so we transferred their classroom into an American cafe and they ran through scenarios of what it would have been like on those days and the days after that.
"Last term, some classes were learning about the Second World War, so we changed their classrooms into a living room during that time, down to the last detail with old fashioned lighting, sofas and even gramophones.
"We like to turn the classroom into a museum. And for us, it works. We see it as the future.
"We like to tailor the curriculum to the child and we think every school should do that, without a doubt.
" It takes a bit of courage and bravery to take the plunge, but it's paid off, and more importantly, it's paid off for our children and their futures."
The award for the most innovative school in the country was presented to staff at a Education lavish ceremony in Manchester on March 9.
It was presented by Spencer Kelly from BBC's technology programme, Click.
Judges deemed the staff's technique of moulding the curriculum to meet their pupils' needs, and the way classrooms are transformed into museum-like learning environments, set the standard across the country.
Editor of Teach Primary magazine, Joe Carter, judge of the award said: "What's happening at Hartsholme really stood out for us. The transformation that's happened in those classrooms is breathtaking.
"We especially liked the fact technology is embedded, rather than being an interesting add-on; it's a bold, creative approach to teaching."