Research & Development

Return to Teaching School page

Please note, the video clips below may not play in Internet Explorer. Please try an alternative browser, e.g. Google Chrome.


Summer Term 2017

Boy's Writing Trip to Porthkerris - 8th June 2017

The Year 2 and Year 6 boys had a fabulous trip to visit Ian Thomas' dive site at Porthkerris last week. The purpose of the visit was to provide an experience from which they would be inspired to produce a piece of writing, as well having the wonderful opportunity to continue their relationship with Ian and find out more about diving. 


The children got to explore the beach, working out what they thought different areas were used for or used to be used for, look for different sea-life along the shore line, look at the massive array of different rocks on the beach, see Ian's diving equipment and hear Ian tell them about the different wildlife and ship-wrecks along the Porthkerris and Cornish coastline. 


This week the children have been working out what writing they might like to do following the trip and they have had wonderful ideas ranging from stories about people living in caves to diving adventures and being captured by pirates. The children have mostly chosen to work together to produce their stories, which has been super for practising their Relationship Renfred skills. Watch this space to see the writing they produce by the end of the term!

Children as Coaches - Friday 16th June 2017

The Year 5 and 3 children enjoyed a great coaching session today. The coaches were specifically focusing on their questioning skills, making sure they were asking open questions so the coachee had to come up with their own ideas, rather than being leading questions which hint to the coachee what to do. The children did really well and the coaches had some super reflection afterwards too!

Boy's Writing Trip - Thursday 8th June

On Thursday 8th June, the Year 2 and Year 6 Boy Writers who work with Miss Otter have a trip to visit Ian’s dive site at Porthkeris. This will be a chance for the children to learn about the location that Ian dives from and see some of the equipment that he and his team use to make dives. We will also spend some time exploring the beach, taking advantage of being in this special location and taking learning from it. This trip takes place in the first week of the half-term and so will act as inspiration for the boy’s writing in our groups for the rest of the term.


The trip will take place during school time. We will be back for you to collect your child as normal at 3:15pm.


Boy's Writing Project - 7th June 2017

The Year 2 and Year 6 groups of children had a thoroughly enjoyable session with Ian Thomas today, hearing all about his most recent diving trip to Palau. All boys were engaged in discussion with him around different aspects of his trip, loving being able to ask questions and really thinking carefully about what they were learning from Ian and what they wanted to know more about. The discussions ranged from life on the small islands of Palau to the creatures that live there to swimming with sharks to the ethical choices around how much of a sample to take from the sponges Ian was diving for. A wonderful and engaging day, well done boys! Now they are all ready for their trip to Ian's dive site at Porthkerris tomorrow.

Boy's Writing Achievement - 26th April 2017

The Year 2 boys joined groups this week and had a super session building dens in the woods. They worked really hard as teams to make sure they were helping each other and listening to each other and both teams created super and original dens! The boys will write about their experience in the woods in the writing group next week.

Boy's Writing Achievement - 27th April 2017

The Year 6 boys are focused this half-term on making sure they finish a text they have started writing. With all their imagination and enthusiasm, they have ended up starting a few different texts and not finishing all of them so they are going to focus on this during the next few weeks. Most boys chose to use the outdoor area this week to do their writing and many of them noticed how they managed to achieve more in this environment, which was super! Ryan managed to finish a great Star Wars story he has been working on for a few weeks, which is a super achievement!

Year 3 & Year 5 Coaching - Friday 21st April 2017

The Year 5s and 3s spent a wonderful lunchtime at Coach Club today, building their relationships together, followed by a great coaching session in the woods. The children are finding new and creative ways to explore the things the coachees are finding more challenging in their learning.


Message for Year 5 coachees

Next Thursday, 27th April, the coaching sessions with the Year 7s will start taking place at Helston Comp. Please meet Miss Otter at the South Site entrance (blue door) any time between 8:15am and 8:45am. If you are arriving early, please bring a book to read whilst we wait for everyone to arrive. Please could all children be there by 8:45am. Any questions, please call the office at Parc Eglos who can get a message to Miss Otter.

Spring Term 2017

Boy's Writing Achievement - 22nd March 2017
The Year 2 groups worked really hard on their writing today, getting down the next parts of their stories. Each session, we also play a spelling game, which you can see them enjoying in the photos too.

Children as Coaches - March 2017
As the new Year 5 & Year 7 project begins, Miss Otter has spent some time with last year's Year 5 coachees to see what they thought of the project last year. This acts as a really great way of tracking the progress of the project and celebrating the children's successes!

Boy's Writing Achievement - 9th March 2017
The Year 6s really enjoyed reading their personal letters from Ian Thomas last week. Ian very kindly gave each boy individual feedback on the start of their stories, which the children were delighted with. They took inspiration from feedback from Ian, who is an author himself, and have all been busy continuing their stories and creating some new texts since. Click here to the letters from Ian.

The Year 2s worked very hard this week, finishing their story mountain plans and starting their stories. They have been able to choose to write a story of their choice so we have a whole range of themes from Star Wars to Pokemon to camping trips and sneaky hamsters! Once they are written we will post them on here so you can see them - so keep an eye out!

Boy's Writing Achievement - 1st March 2017
The Year 2 Boy's Writing Groups made choices about their new genre of writing today and both groups have chosen to write stories! Here are some photos of them working hard on their story mountain plans. Look out for more photos of them and their writing!

Boy's Writing Achievement - February 2017

The Year 2s and Year 6s had a super half-term after Christmas, hearing Ian's diary entries from his expedition and creating their own in return. Activities last term included the children writing questions as they listened to Ian's diary entries, playing spellings games and using the games in the woodland as inspiration for writing their own diary entries. Take a look at the photos below of some of this fun learning!

Reflections from last year's coaches - Tuesday 21st February 2017
As part of continuing to measure the impact of the Children as Coaches project, today Miss Otter caught up with some of the coaches from last year to hear about their thoughts now about being coaches. These videos show what they thought was good about the project, what they learned and if they are continuing to use the skills they learned in their lives today. Thank you to all the children involved in making the videos and for sharing what they thought. Miss Otter was really proud to hear their ideas and to see the lasting impact of the coaching project on them. Super!

Please note, the videos do not play in Internet Explorer - please try an alternative browser, e.g. Google Chrome.

Coaching - 21st February 2017

The Year 5s and 3s have been having a super time with the coaching project over the last half-term. The coaches have used coaching wheels to help the coachees reflect about their R learning skills and have coached them to find ways to progress with a learning skill of their choice. The relationships between the coaches and coachees grow in strength with every session, as the coaches help the coachees explore what they think and feel and support them to make decisions that will benefit their learning as well as their confidence.

Coaching - 10th January 2017

The Year 3 & Year 5 coaching project has flown off to a brilliant start this term! The coaches and coachees met on Thursday for their first lunchtime Coach Club, during which they enjoyed eating lunch in their partners and then playing outside in the garden. This Coach Club allows the children to form really strong and trusting relationships, which will enhance the impact of the coaching sessions together on a Friday afternoon.

Today, the Year 3 coachees have had their first training session with Miss Otter to learn more about coaching, what skills they will need to use as a coachee and what they can expect from the coaching sessions. This extra training will hopefully help the coachees to have an even richer experience of coaching with their Year 5 coach. 

On Friday, the children will enjoy Coach Club again, followed by their first proper coaching session together in the afternoon.

Raising Boys Writing Achievement - 10th January 2017

The Boy's Writing Groups had a fabulous first session last week with meeting the author and explorer, Ian Thomas. Ian had thoroughly enjoyed reading their letters over the Christmas break and fed back to the boys about these. With the Year 2s, he then shared photos and stories about the Arctic and Antarctic, as well as inviting them to try on some of the clothes he wore! With the Year 6s, he shared adventure stories about the Amazon and diving in the Amazon River. He also listened to the children share their own facts too about the places he visited and creatures he saw, which were very impressive!


Ian is going away on an expedition this week and has agreed to write diary entries to the groups so they can read a first-hand account of his adventure. Ian has asked the boys to write their own diaries during our writing sessions, which Miss Otter will send to Ian. This two-way communication will be a lovely way for the boys to express themselves in writing and write for a purpose. Once Ian returns from his trip, we hope to be able to meet up with him again!

Coaching - 16th December 2016

The Year 5 coaches have now had all their training for the time being and so are ready to coach after Christmas! This afternoon, the coaches and coachees met each other for the first time, which was lovely, and are looking forward to meeting up again after the holidays. The coaches and coachees will meet up for Coach Club during a lunchtime each week, where they will get to know each other, play games and build a strong relationship with each other. Then every Friday afternoon, they will meet for coaching with the Year 5s coaching the Year 3s on their learning skills. It's going to be fabulous!


The Year 6s will also have the chance to continue using their coaching skills they learned last year, by being a coach to the Year 5s. This is likely to take place on a lunchtime each week, but as it is a new feature to the research project, we will also be experimenting with what works best for the children so the Year 5s feel really supported.


Autumn Term 2016

Raising Boys Writing Achievement - 8th December 2016

The Smile More (6KH) group worked really hard today to write to Ian Thomas and put the first part of their stories into their letters. They peer assessed the writing so they could make sure they have checked their punctuation and spelling in particular. Every boy produced a great letter and even had time for a game at the end of the session! Well done boys! They look forward to meeting Ian in January.



Jake page 1 / Jake page 2





The PPAP (6KB) group worked extremely hard to write interesting letters to Ian Thomas and to include the start of their story within the letter. Every boy concentrated hard on producing neat writing, using peer assessment to check their spelling and punctuation especially. Every letter is super - well done boys! They look forward to meeting Ian in January.








Sam A

Sam M

7th December 2016

The Writing Zombies (Dragonflies) have produced excellent letters to Ian Thomas today. Click on the names of the children to have a look at how neat they are, and full of interesting questions. Well done boys!




Oliver M


The Stars of Parc Eglos (The Smarties) completed their fantastic letters to Ian Thomas today. Click on the names of the children to have a look at how neat and interesting they are! Well done boys!







Children as Coaches - 19th November 2016

The Year 5s who wanted to apply to be a coach have worked exceptionally hard on their homework this last week to produce their applications. Miss Otter spent Friday afternoon with those children who were presenting their work to her, many of them in the form of a PowerPoint presentation. Miss Otter was absolutely blown away by the high standard and outstanding quality of the applications. It was clear to see that each and every child who applied had put great effort into their application and shared really great reasons for wanting to be a coach. The children wrote, drew and presented with confidence and all applicants can be really proud of what they produced. Miss Otter will be considering the applications over the next week in order to make the very difficult decision of which ten children will become coaches. Those chosen as coaches will begin their training next Friday afternoon and those who don’t get onto the programme can look forward to using coaching skills in class with their peers to support each other in their learning.


The Year 3s have also been busy, working hard in class this week on their applications to be a Year 3 coachee. Miss Otter will be considering these applications with the class teachers to make a decision about who will be a Year 3 coachee over the next few weeks, so they can meet their coach before Christmas.

13th November 2016

The Children as Coaches introductory training sessions have taken place with the Year 5 and Year 3 classes now and the children showed great enthusiasm and engagement across all sessions. These lessons enabled the children to learn skills that they can use in class to support others and their own learning and some of the children will go onto use these skills as part of the Year 5 & Year 3 coaching programme.

The Year 5s learned some of the key skills in being a coach and being a coachee, hearing from last year's coaches to learn what it was like to be a coach from their point of view. Those Year 5 children who are interested in becoming coaches have been set the task of creating an application for their homework. These are due in on Friday 18th November and the 10 children who will be trained as coaches will find out the following week. 

The Year 3s learned some core skills of being a coachee, loving the activity where they were practising communicating effectively with their partner to describe a picture on their whiteboard to see if their partner could replicate it just from their verbal instructions! Since the sessions, the Year 3s who are interested have also been working hard in class to apply to be a coachee and they will find out before Christmas if they will be taking part in the project after Christmas. 

Good luck to all of those who are applying for a position!

7th November 2016

Miss Otter has begun the second phase of the Children as Coaches project, starting with the Year 3 children. This academic Year, Miss Otter will train ten Year 5 children to coach ten Year 3 children. The project begins with whole year group training for both year groups so they can gain an understanding of what coaching is and decide if they want to apply to be a Year 5 coach or a Year 3 coachee. This next week will see all whole year group sessions delivered so the children can decide if they want to be involved further. Once applications are submitted, the chosen Year 5 coaches will undergo further training so they are ready to coach their Year 3 after Christmas.

Further to this, a group of Year 7 children will also be trained up as coaches to work with Year 5 children later in the academic year. This is an excellent transition project, with children from Helston Comp working with children at Parc Eglos (and with other primary schools in the future).

The aim of the project is to develop the children's learning skills whilst also fostering relationships across the year groups, building confidence and empowering children to make their own decisions and take responsibility for themselves. Following the success of the Children as Coaches project last year, we are certain this year will be even better!


Watch on this part of the website to see weekly updates about the project to see how it is all progressing.


Raising Boys Writing Achievement - 19th November 2016

Wow! What a fabulous second week it has been with the writing groups! Each member of the groups has been engaged and enthusiastic in the sessions this week, contributing ideas and beginning to plan their writing. The Year 2 groups have been planning their letter to send to Ian Thomas and the Year 6s have been planning their stories.


All boys seem to be particularly enjoying the outdoor aspect of the groups as well as working on the bus. The movement between these areas appears to have a motivational impact upon them as they engage with their writing in different ways: treasure word hunts in the outdoor area and writing on whiteboards then moving to writing in their books on the bus. 

13th November 2016

The Year 2 and Year 6 Boy's Writing Groups have made a fantastic start to the project with their first sessions this week. There was bundles of enthusiasm from each group, as they decided on their group name, agreed their group expectations and began to share their ideas and thoughts about writing.

The groups will be involved with the author and diver, Ian Thomas, who will act as a role model and source of inspiration for the writing the boys do. Ian will come to meet the groups after Christmas and so in preparation for this, they will all be producing a piece of writing to send to him before the holidays.

During the first sessions, the boys discussed what they wanted to send to Ian before they met him. The Year 2 groups decided they will produce letters to Ian, telling him all about themselves. The Year 6 groups decided they will write stories, with one group writing fantasy stories and the other group writing suspense/horror. 

The boys are really excited to be working in the groups and to be exploring ways with Miss Otter to move their writing forward from wherever they are at the moment. The groups enjoyed using the outdoor area as well as the bus and so we will continue to make the most of this fabulous space that is available to us. 

As we will be going outside each week, please can the children have their waterproofs and wellington boots for the sessions. The Year 2 groups run on a Wednesday morning and the Year 6 groups run on a Thursday afternoon. Thank you very much for your support.


7th November 2016

This week, Miss Otter will begin working with groups of Year 2 and Year 6 children in order to find ways to raise boy's achievement in writing. The boys have been chosen because it is believed they will benefit greatly from working in a small group whilst focusing on writing and learning skills. We see real potential for these boys to make progress in the groups and developing greater confidence and skills with their writing. 


Watch this part of the website for weekly reports about the groups, to see what they have been up to and to see how you could support their writing at home.


Summer Term 2016

Low Entry, High Ceiling Maths Research Project

The Maths Hub are kindly funding a research project for us to evidence the impact of low entry, high ceiling activities in maths.

Rachael Giddings and Simon Rigg are currently working hard at researching this area. The final page will be ready next year and will be shared other schools.


Coaching Programme - 14th April 2016

Run by Vicky Otter

It was a super start back to the Summer Term with the Year 3 and Year 5 coaching session. Earlier in the week, the coachees chose an aspect of an R behaviour for learning that they wanted to work on, for example, being more resourceful in their learning. Today, the coaches coached them around this with the aim of helping them to progress with their target.

17th March 2016

It was another great session today for the coaching programme! The coaches took their coachees through a coaching wheel, giving their coachee chance to reflect on each of the Rs. The coachee thought about the Rs they were really confident with and those they were not so confident with. This reflection will form the basis for the next coaching session.

11th March 2016


The coaches have been making excellent progress in being Reflective Rosettas during the coaching project. They have spent half an hour reflecting after each coaching session to think about what went well, what they might improve and what they feel like they want to do next session. The coaches are learning to trust their intuition on what will work for their coachees next session and so developing a trust for themselves, which is super.


10th March 2016

Another great coaching session with the Year 5s and Year 3s today. In their reflection session last week, the coaches decided that they would like to go outside with their coachees this week. This enabled the coaching partners to engage in different activities whilst enjoying the outdoors, which has been another step to forming a strong bond between them for their coaching partnership.

3rd March 2016


It was an exciting day for the coaching programme yesterday – the first time the children had got together to spend a session. They played games to help them to get to know each other and began building a strong coaching relationship.


Coaching Training - February 2016

The Year 5 coaches had a super time in class this afternoon working with their Year 3 coachees. The coaches joined their coachees to see them in their learning environment and to get to know them a bit better. It was a super chance for the partners to begin getting to know each other and some of the discussions might form the basis for their first coaching conversation. They are all really looking forward to their first coaching sessions next week!

The Year 5s are busy with their coaching training so they are ready after half-term to begin coaching their Year 3 coaches. The coaches have been working very hard, learning all about listening, summarising and questioning as core skills they will use in their new role. Here you can see the coaches practising these skills with each other.