Rainbow Room is a bespoke educational setting within Northfield Primary School that is designed to meet the needs of students with ASD and/or social communication difficulties and/or severe learning needs and/or social emotional mental health needs. All the children are working significantly behind their peers and are working towards the Wakefield Progression Steps, which are used to set targets and to track and measure progress. Rainbow Room is a 12 place provision and is usually full.
The Rainbow Room offers a fully differentiated curriculum which meets the needs of the children. Being in Rainbow Room increases independence through the use of 1:2, 1:3 or 1:4 group support with work being specifically tailored to the children’s needs. The children also receive regular 1:1 support to work on their own specific targets. The Rainbow Room curriculum places high emphasis on developing social skills and speech, language and communication skills and follows advice from speech and language therapists. The overall aim of Rainbow Room is to enable children to be reintegrated into mainstream classes. This is achieved by each child having a personalised timetable to show when they attend different lessons within a mainstream class. Adults from within Rainbow Room support the children in accessing mainstream classrooms, which may involve staying for a full session, staying for the first part of the session or walking with the child to the classroom. Children also have the opportunity to mix with peers from mainstream classes during Social Intervention groups with Learning Mentors and during daily Read, Write Inc sessions.
There is a consultation process before any child enters Rainbow Room with children, parents, the SENCO, class teachers and advisory teachers. Placements are also reviewed termly to ensure that the needs of all children are being met.
The provision identified to meet the needs of our children is an adapted mainstream curriculum with a high emphasis placed on social communication and language development, severe learning needs and social, emotional and mental health needs. Our goals are to develop independence, flexibility of thought and promote wellbeing in all our children. This is accomplished through structured learning for children so that they have the opportunities to develop the skills that they need to prepare them for reintegration into mainstream classes and their next steps in education.
The children are at different starting points in their education journey and it is the purpose of the Rainbow Room to enable each and every child to reach their academic and social aspirations. They need help building resilience and developing systems to manage the classroom and its social demands which can cause them extreme anxiety. The staff in Rainbow Room help the children to understand routines, support them develop relationships with peers and adults and help reduce anilities associated with learning.
All children will have access to teaching and learning which covers the National Curriculum but is delivered in a way that continues to support their pastoral and special educational needs as described in the EHCP plan for those children who have one. During the day pupils will be involved in a range of learning activities in groups or as individuals. This will take place in the Rainbow Room or in mainstream classes where appropriate. The children attend daily Read, Write Inc sessions with children from other classes to help promote friendships away from Rainbow Room as well as meeting their academic needs. The main aim of the room is to reintegrate the children back into their mainstream classes. When they are ready the children return to their mainstream classes for specific lessons, initially with adult support. They start with lessons such as PE, Music and Forest Schools where they will be able to participate successfully despite their learning abilities. We also provide reverse inclusion where children from Rainbow Room and children from their mainstream classes take part in social interventions with our Learning Mentors. This promotes relationships with their peers in preparation for the children returning to mainstream classes.
The curriculum within Rainbow Room is thematic to engage the children within their learning and has been developed following advice from our Educational Phycologist and advisory teacher for WISENDSS. There is a rolling program and a new theme is taught each half term. Objectives predominantly come from the Key Stage 1 National Curriculum as all children are working within KS1 expectations and follow the Wakefield Progression Steps. Where possible links are made with Kay Stage 2 National Curriculum objectives to ensure that the older children are getting their educational entitlement. Some topics link directly with what is being delivered within the Key Stage 1 classes i.e. toys, transport, living things but these are sometimes taught at different times during the year to mainstream classes. Some topics are only taught within Rainbow Room due to some children having previously covered topics in KS1 prior to joining Rainbow Room. When selecting books for our novel study there are some overlaps with KS1 and KS2. However some books are taught purely within Rainbow Room as some children have previously used some of the KS1 books before joining Rainbow Room. Novels selected are all high quality texts.
All the children have individual targets through a Supporting Me to Learn Plan which are tracked and monitored on a weekly basis. All maths and literacy lessons are planned using the Wakefield Progression Steps to ensure the needs of all children are met. Wakefield Progression Steps (WPS) are tracked and monitored at the end of each unit of work to ensure the children are in the right literacy and maths groups. The groups are fluid with children moving between them depending on the area of focus and their WPS. This ensures that each child is completing work which is ambitious and promotes high expectations.