Across the Pioneer Federation we use The Thrive Approach to support children with gaps in their early development.
Our aims are to fill the developmental gaps and increase wellbeing thereby increasing access to learning. This is facilitated by developing a supporting relationship with a trusted adult and offering experiences that allow the development of language to facilitate self-monitoring and regulation alongside social skills that will promote learning. Individual Thrive support is a planned intervention although all staff aim to use the approach on a daily basis.
The Thrive approach ensures that the way that the adult responds to the child facilitates the development of a good relationship where the adult is playful, accepting, curious and emphatic. In addition, Thrive uses creative activities to access the side of the brain that came on line first when the gaps may have developed. The children are supported to recognise the sensations in their body, develop emotional vocabulary and recognise how these feelings are shown in others. We encourage them to think before making choices and acting, to know themselves and appreciate the special things about themselves.
The Thrive Approach acknowledges that there are different stages of development that come online at different times building the foundations for future learning. Those children with gaps in the very early stages (BEING, DOING and THINKING) often find it challenging to access learning.
Class teachers use the Thrive online profiling three times a year which allows us to identify individuals and groups that will benefit from Thrive support. The online profiling system allows children to be identified with gaps at BEING, DOING and THINKING. Within the Pioneer federation we prioritise individual support for those children who are identified in the lowest stages of development for their age group. When time is limited and controls the numbers of children who can receive support, we will focus on those children with gaps within the lowest areas of development. On occasion the Head of School may identified a pupil for support that falls outside these criteria.
Once a child has been identified for individual support parent consent is gained. Following this a further individual profile will be completed by the practitioner and class teacher together. This will then generate a focus for the individual action plan that will be carried out by the practitioner. Practitioners with the class teacher will review the child’s profile when appropriate but at least twice with the intervention period.
Individual work is tailored to a child’s particular needs using the Thrive Online Action Planning tool. It is not intended to be group work, or something that other children can access unless indicated in the plan. Each session will usually be around 30 minutes with 15 minutes allocated to review, and plan and resource the next session. It is important that there is regularity and consistency with the timing and frequency of sessions, but in particular with the practitioner running the sessions so that a trusting relationship can develop. A safe and secure place for sessions to take place is crucial.
Thrive acknowledges that to reframe neural pathways takes over 500 repetitions and at Pioneer we recognise that Thrive support is not a quick fix for a behaviour incident. In general interventions will run for one set of children between November and April and then April and November. Children may receive more than one intervention run. This is reviewed using the individual and whole school profiling alongside other school monitoring systems.
Other small groups of children within a class maybe identified and an action plan can be generated for the class teacher to use in class. This maybe for small group work or strategies to use for the whole class but with special benefits to the identified small group. Individual consent is not obtained as this is part of our whole school provision.