Hargrave Park Primary School have expanded their now>press>play subscription to include 7 transmitters, 70 sets of headphones and 6 tablets to support their continuous provision model.
They’re using the pink headphones to empower their EYFS and KS1 pupils’ language development and communication, by encouraging self-directed language rich learning.
Why did your school decide to use now>press>play initially and has that reason changed since you started using it?
We were looking for a set of listening stations for EYFS, we wanted something durable and long lasting, and the current market options were limited or very expensive. EYFS and KS1 follow a continuous provision model, and so a class set of headphones were not practical, instead a smaller set where children can independently use the headphones to listen to stories or songs when encouraged to do so. now>press>play provided the opportunity to have a set of 6 in the classroom for children to use as they please, with little support from the adult. They can choose their story and act this out alone or alongside peers. Adults are also able to guide and lead the group, by playing a familiar story which may be the ‘story of the week’ or by choosing a now>press>play Experience that links to the topic, or to specific children’s interests.
We know you have a lot of physical equipment compared to our standard school subscription. How do you use your multiple transmitters and several sets of headphones and what does it enable you to do?
Each classroom has their own transmitter and this enables us to have different sessions running in each class throughout the day. We can also tailor the songs and stories to children’s own interests and experiences. Children can use now>press>play as part of a carousel of activities in the day. Each child gets to experience the session, just in smaller groups. This avoids booking clashes with the rest of the school. The headphones are available to children all day and they can choose to go and use them and listen to a story or an Experience.
How do you or your colleagues construct a lesson, or lessons, around an experience and when do they use them? For example, do you use them as hooks for topics, to consolidate topics or for intervention work?
We try to link the experiences to current learning. This worked well during lockdown and something we are continuing to work on back in school. We choose different stories or songs that we play on a loop, so children can access these throughout the day. We also plan to use the now>press>play Experiences for specific events and focuses such as linking our writing outcome with the Experience of visiting the seaside. Making these links will become a regular task in our weekly PPA meetings.
What do you think is the effect of giving children the opportunity to engage with the headphones at particular times throughout the day?
Children are becoming more confident and independent using the technology.
It provides another model of rich language.
It provides another way of bringing learning to life e.g. history. This has been particularly important in the last year as we haven’t been able to have visitors or go on trips. now>press>play provides a way of thinking beyond the classroom.
What areas or priorities has now>press>play helped with?
- EYFS – Communication, language and literacy and being imaginative
- KS1 – Spoken language, History, Science
Have you seen an impact on any specific areas or on specific children that has been unexpected? Please describe this impact, with particular focus on any highlight story!
EYFS have demonstrated lots of responsibility when using the headphones independently. They have used the experiences or stories to support their drawing, mark-making and imagination. In Year 1 there has been an increased engagement with the Experiences and willingness to have a go. Children are becoming more confident to express themselves. This links to the work we do in drama and role play.
What have the children and staff said about now>press>play and this style of learning?
- Positive comments on our online learning journal system (Tapestry) from parents
- Children are always keen to take part!