Delivering The 6 Habits Programme At Broad Oak Primary School

One Goal coach Ben Rowe tells us about his experience delivering The 6 Habits programme, and how a fantastic school can be improved

Delivering The 6 Habits Programme At Broad Oak Primary School

Ben RoweOver the year I have spent at Broad Oak Primary School, my main focus has been delivering The 6 Habits programme, physical education (PE) and Forest Crew throughout the school.

When I first went into the school, they were looking at ways to make the school stand out within what is a very competitive catchment area, and looking to do things that would make the school famous. I think that my role was somewhere in this mix, to add character education to the already fantastic work the teachers are doing at that school.


At first this seemed like a daunting prospect, as there was quite a lot of responsibility on my shoulders, and pressure, as the whole school was waiting to see what it was I was going to do. As the first term settled down, and the language of the 6 Habits was being introduced into the school, the first signs of change were beginning to be heard. Hearing children talking about friendships and making the right decisions was great to hear. It was great to be able to work throughout the whole school, as this gave me the opportunity to teach all of the children about The 6 Habits. Initially the idea was to link in The 6 Habits with physical education (PE), but at first it was really difficult to link our first sport of gymnastics, so the head and i decided to focus on the 6 habits first, so that the children could get used to the language, then see how we could take things forward.


During my first term at Broad Oak I had my first experience of Forest Crew, which over the year was to turn out to be a great success, and become a big part of my time at Broad Oak. The first term was spent training with a guy called Tony. He came in and took the class, and myself and another teacher watched and learned in preparation for when we took classes out on our own. It was great fun!


Once we knew what we were doing with Forest Crew, we decided to link it with The 6 Habits, as some of the language was similar to that used when doing the therapeutic sessions in the woods, and each class would be out for 6 weeks so it seemed to be the natural thing to do. It has worked really well over the terms, as well as all the fun activities we do, making shelters, building campfires to name just a couple; the children can see how everything links together, and it helps having me teach them in the classroom and out in the woods. Forest Crew has been a great success this year, and i am looking forward to doing it all again next year.


Over the year you could start to see the impact I was having in the school. There was a particular incident when two children were having an argument, leading to a bit of pushing, and the children who were breaking it up were saying that’s not great friendship, and that’s not the correct behaviour. There was a couple of members of staff there and they were impressed how the children were using the language of The 6 Habits, and that they were showing understanding of what they mean to try and diffuse a situation in the playground.


Over time, once the children understood what the 6 habits meant, I felt it was time with the older children to try and link the 6 habits with PE, and with the younger KS1 children to link it with fundamentals. I chose basketball as the first sport to try. The idea was to take what we had been learning about with The 6 Habits, and then use it to see what effect it had when we are playing sport. Probably the best example of this is when we did a lesson on the decision making process during a game of basketball. The children were quite surprised how many decisions they had to make during a short passage of play, and in turn, the importance of the decisions they were making, and how it could affect the game.


It was good to see the children thinking differently about their choices, and not just throwing the basketball around.


With the younger KS1 children, I tried to link the 6 habits with fundamental sessions, and slowly introduce what putting maximum effort in, or following the rules of the game would look like. This has worked well, and hopefully continue to do this next year.


I feel that over the year I have had an impact with the children. They seem excited by my lessons, and willing to learn. The language of the 6 habits is starting to be used throughout the school, and the staff are now ready to introduce them into their day to day vocabulary within their classrooms. Whether I have made a difference remains to be seen, I think this is something that will have to be judged over time.




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