WHY ARE WE TEACHING A KNOWLEDGE-RICH CURRICULUM; HOW IS IT DIFFERENT?
Our ASDAN curriculum is designed so that pupils can gain an understanding and appreciation for different ways of learning through a variety of different subjects and topics. The curriculum focuses on the Personal Development Programme which allows students to be able to access 12 different modules – covering a substantial array of life skills.
Our curriculum emphasises the importance of developing practical skills, building confidence, communication skills and social skills which are invaluable in the wider world. Students are given the opportunity to look at different topics, learn in different ways in a safe environment and be able to understand how these challenges fit into the wider world perspective. They are encouraged to share ideas, work together, work autonomously, create work and be able to evaluate the process.
As part of our curriculum students learn about a healthy diet and will have to prepare their own meal plans- it requires research, discussions, group work, preparation, budgeting and then finally creating the meal. It allows students to use their knowledge and apply what they have learnt in a fun environment and making the connections to how this will help them later in life. This knowledge will enable pupils to engage further in other areas of the school curriculum.
WHY ARE WE TEACHING THIS CONTENT?
The Personal Development Programme (PDP) feature 12 modules. Each learner must work from their own student book and compile a portfolio of evidence to show what they have done. Students gain one or two credits for each section completed, with each credit representing about 10 hours of activity. Six credits are needed to achieve Bronze, 12 credits for Silver and 18 credits for Gold. Students are required to plan and review their work at key points, explaining how they have developed their skills in six areas: Ability to learn. Teamwork, Problem solving, IT skills, Literacy and Numeracy.
Life skills are paramount in the modern world, it gives the students the ability to solve problems, communicate and deal with issues such as mental health and well-being in a sensitive way. It also offers the opportunity for students to self- reflect on their own skill set and develop these further ready for the wider world.
WHY ARE WE TEACHING IT IN THIS ORDER?
The curriculum pattern depends on the learner and what will engage them, allowing some flexibility. We will often do larger projects, for example the Science garden and the creation ASDAN area as a group. This keeps the students engaged and focused. Other topics such as the baking module will be completed at an appropriate time to allow students to complete the course.
WHAT DO PUPILS NEED TO REMEMBER AND BE ABLE TO DO IN THIS SUBJECT?
Pupils need to be able to work well with others as good listeners and team players. ASDAN is a subject where collaborative work is of high importance, and they must be good communicators. Students must appreciate a variety of topics and be willing to have a go! As pupils progress through the curriculum, they will be able to analyse and evaluate the importance of the skills they are gaining. Fundamentally we want pupils to remember and understand the life skills needed to help them in the future.
WHAT METHODS DO WE USE TO HELP PUPILS SECURE THIS KNOWLEDGE IN LONG-TERM MEMORY?
At the start of every lesson, students are quizzed with a mixture of more recent questions but always including questions from previous topics and previous years.
WHAT METHODS DO WE USE TO HELP PUPILS SECURE THIS KNOWLEDGE IN LONG-TERM MEMORY AND APPLY IT IN COMPLEX TASKS?
We draw comparisons and connections between current and previous modules so that pupils can find the skills that run throughout each topic/ module.
For the course overview presentation please click here.
To view the ASDAN Curriculum Overview click here.
More information on the ASDAN Qualification can be found here.