A Northumberland first school is this week celebrating speech with a special week of activities to help its pupils express themselves.

Abbeyfields School in Morpeth, which is part of The Three Rivers Learning Trust, is holding Oracy Week to promote excellence in speaking and listening among its children.

The week, which started on February 11th, began with a ‘traditional tale trail’ around the school grounds, both inside and out, with the children greeted by staff in costume as characters from familiar stories. The week’s activities have been designed to help the school’s 346 pupils to speak clearly, confidently and appropriately to a range of audiences.

Headteacher Sandra Ford explained: “Communication is central to effective learning and a huge focus for us both at Abbeyfields and across the trust as a whole. Lots of great discussion and deduction has been the order of the day, promoting good listening and reasoning which is what Oracy Week is all about.

“Our aim as educators is to help young people to develop as independent and creative thinkers and learners, and our focus on oracy at Abbeyfields will support learning through talking, to deepen our children’s understanding and improve their ability to reason and explain.

“Our work on oracy goes on throughout every academic year, but having a specific focus week allows us to really inspire the pupils, engaging excitement and promoting discussion and curiosity. Ultimately, we hope to expand their knowledge and vocabulary, which will in turn improve their ability and confidence to access all the elements of the school curriculum.”

Oracy Week at Abbeyfields is focusing on the theme of the ‘traditional tale’ and there will be lots of activities to enable pupils to try out new skills and improve their self-expression. Staff and students from across the trust, including from The King Edward VI High School, and Newminster Middle School, are also providing support for the week, along with parents and friends of the school.

Abbeyfields School currently has places available in nursery, reception and Year 4. There are also places to start in reception in September 2019. To book a visit or chat with staff, contact the school via its website at abbeyfields.the3rivers.net.