Golden Grove Community School, Pembroke|
"Golden Grove Community School has delivered the POPAT Programme through the medium of English for several years. Originally it was taught on the infant site to all English medium classes and was continued on the Junior site for children with special educational needs and those experiencing some difficulty with literacy.
In the Early Years/Key Stage 1 classes it was timetabled for all children at least three times a week and administered by teachers and Learning Support Assistants. POPAT was a key factor in supporting children’s language and literacy development. For the younger children an added bonus has been a significant improvement in their listening skills.
POPAT involves interactive learning and there has been a marked improvement in the children’s willingness and confidence to write independently.
Children transfer the skills and knowledge acquired through POPAT into their spelling attempts and independent writing. The programme has also been invaluable in raising the spelling and reading ages, in developing a greater awareness of our spelling system and enabling children to discover themselves, different strategies for spelling irregular words.
We recently carried out a small-scale project organised by the LEA Literacy Advisor, with Basic Skills Agency funding. The class teacher selected a group of 6 year three pupils whose spelling and writing levels were causing concern. The group was withdrawn for three half hour sessions a week over two terms. They were taught by a POPAT trained Learning Support Assistant. We were delighted with the improvement in their spelling results, the quality of their writing and their increased confidence. The spelling ages of the group increased from between 1 year 3 months and 2 years.
POPAT is now available in the Welsh Language and we have been trialling POPAT Cymraeg in our Welsh medium classes. Due to the phonetic nature of the language and the phonological basis of the programme, it has provided those children who are not first language Welsh speakers with the chance to experience a similar level of success to those in the mainstream English classes".
Les Johnson, Headteacher