Our approach to learning

At City Heights E-ACT Academy, we believe that at the core to becoming an excellent academy, is our ‘DNA’. Our ‘DNA’ essentially underpins all that we do.

One of our core ‘DNA’ is a belief in outstanding learning. We believe that we are all here to learn, and making excellent progress is our priority. Our acting headteacher can frequently be heard saying that ‘outstanding learning is the main thing’ here at City Heights.

“There is only one twenty first century skill: the ability to act intelligently when you are faced with a situation for which you have not been specifically prepared.”

Seymour Papert, Professor Emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

It is this belief that drives our approach to learning and teaching at City Heights E-ACT Academy. We know that both students and staff need to be life-long learners and that education is not just about memorising answers to questions you then go on to regurgitate in an exam. Instead, each lesson should prepare students to solve the many new, unseen problems that lie ahead.

At City Heights E-ACT Academy, all students are treated as intelligent and individual by teachers, irrespective of their prior attainment at primary school, and all will go on to achieve beyond their initial personal expectations. Students are taught demanding content and are expected to explain and find connections between complex ideas from a young age. Students are taught to think in a disciplined manner and show understanding of the core concepts in each subject, and never just to recall information or carry out formulaic responses.

Our curriculum covers traditional academic subjects but also meet the needs of the modern world. We don’t see that there is a tension between the two. We will focus on developing a real independence and thirst for learning in our students. Students are taught:

  • new ways of thinking: including creativity, critical thinking, problem-solving and decision-making
  • new ways of working: including new forms of collaboration and communication
  • new tools for working: including the capacity to harness the potential of new technologies

Learning and teaching is our core business at City Heights E-ACT Academy – without exceptional lessons we can’t become an outstanding academy. We believe that one lifetime is not enough to develop the craft of teaching and that as soon as a teacher stops learning they stop improving. As such, we are committed to giving the time, training and leadership to our teachers which they need to reach these standards.

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