St. Patrick's Catholic Primary School

Making learning irresistible

Approaches to Teaching and Learning

At St. Patrick’s we provide a stimulating, engaging curriculum. Our children enjoy learning. We provide daily opportunities to develop skills essential for children to become lifelong learners. Effective, embedded formative assessment strategies ensure our children make progress and are involved in their own learning. Staff are motivated and make educating children their first concern. Continuous professional development is given priority in the school to maintain high standards of teaching and learning, and staff self-reflect on their pedagogy, making them better practitioners.


St. Patrick’s ‘Learner Skills’

‘Learner Skills’ are a fundamental part of our school life. How the children learn is just as important as what they learn. We understand that meta-cognition and self-regulation has high levels of impact on the children’s progress. The expectation in our school is that all children are provided with high quality learning experiences in which they can practise these skills, leading to consistently high levels of pupil engagement and achievement. We aim to give the children the skills they require to become effective lifelong learners, and foster a ‘growth mind-set’ where the children are taught that success in learning can be achieved through effort and persistence.


Foundation Stage

We begin to introduce our children to ‘characteristics of learning’ in the Foundation Stage. Children use 'Learning Superheroes' toys to develop the skills that they need so they can become lifelong learners.

Key Stage One

Other ‘learner skills’ superheroes are introduced in Key Stage One.

  • Curiosity – Cat
  • Creativity and imagination – Unicorn
  • Changing - Chameleon
  • Resilience – Tortoise
  • Relationships – Ant
  • Planning Ahead – Owl
  • Making links – Spider


Key Stage Two

There are 6 core learner skills in Key Stage Two:

A curious learner will…

Ask questions and seek out the answer . A curious learner will be self-motivated because they feel good about their learning. Curiosity makes learning rewarding. A curious learner is more likely to remember their learning.

A confident learner will…

Have belief in themselves and will be proud of their learning and achievements. A confident learner is an eager learner. Confidence helps us to cope with the ups and downs of learning. A confident learner develops good relationships with their teachers and peers which helps them to improve.

A resilient learner will…

Learn from their mistakes and take on challenges. A resilient learner will show determination, grit and perseverance. Resilience helps us to bounce back stronger. A resilient learner will recover quickly from difficulties.

A learner that listens will…

Focus on the speaker, maintaining eye contact, and concentrate. They will try and understand the other person’s point of view, using signs such as nodding and words of encouragement. A good listener will listen not only to what is being said but also to what is left unsaid.

A learner that discusses will…

Work with others to think of and share ideas. A good discussion allows everyone the chance to talk. A learner that discusses well will offer their opinions, look for opportunities to contribute and challenge others in a respectful way.

An independent learner will …

Try things for themselves, are self -motivated and set their own goals. They manage their time well and reflect on their own learning. They learn from positive role models. An independent learner takes responsibility for their own learning and makes their own decisions.

At St. Patrick’s we encourage children to take responsibility for their own learning and our learner skills’ helps them to be more self –aware and think about their own learning more explicitly. Special ‘St Patrick’s Learner’ assemblies take place every half term to celebrate our children’s learning.


Please Click on the link below to view our full school policy

Approaches to Teaching and Learning Policy

Growth Mindset

Having been introduced to the concept of growth mindset at St Patrick's in September 2015, pupils have participated in a range of activities to learn more about it and try to display a growth mindset in school (and at home). Pupils are taught h

ow their brains work and how new connections are formed when we try new things and practise them, over and over. Pupils have learnt about famous and influential people who have succeeded due to having a growth mindset and not giving up on their goal. We have had PSHE lessons and assemblies about growth mindset, but most importantly, teachers and pupils have embraced the language and the way of thinking that promotes using a growth mindset in all lessons.

Key points for growth mindset in our school:

We remember it’s always OK to make mistakes – we learn from them
We never give up! We try a different approach, or use a different strategy
We learn from each other – you guys often make the best teachers!
We don’t compare ourselves with others, but we do learn from others
We challenge ourselves – which really helps us make progress
We take risks – we don’t limit ourselves by taking the easy option
We join in as much as possible – and we learn much more by being involved
We remember that mastering something new feels so much better than doing something you can already do
We remember that the brain is making new connections all the time – the only thing you need to know is that you can learn anything!

Some useful links to documents you can read for more understanding of the growth mindest approach see below;

 Changing your Mindset.pdfDownload
 Tips for Mindset at Home.pdfDownload
 Mindset Summary.pdfDownload
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