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Ho Ho Ho! Our Christmas dinner was delicious today and well done to Steve, our Chef, for preparing such a wonderful dinner. The children had so much fun. Thank you to all the staff


The school has gained permission to publish photos of these children on Twitter


This week we had our final cross country run of the year and what a one to finish on! We stopped to appreciate the beautiful sunrise during our run around Rothamsted before appreciating the delicious Simmons treats which Hettie’s dad kindly gifted us all.


What a wonderful Christivity from our Key Stage 1 & EYFS children. You were all superstars!


On Saturday our very own Harpenden Academy elves wrapped almost 200 gifts, generously donated by HA families to make Xmas day full of joy & hope for children who are currently living in care. The children (and parents) worked tirelessly all morning to wrap and label the gifts


We are very proud of our team of 7 children who won the Primary School BritishGo Championship in Birmingham on Saturday. The children showed great sportsmanship and determination and retained their title! Well done!


This morning we had a beautiful frosty run around the Common to wake up our bodies and brains. Such an invigorating and peaceful start to the day!


Retweeted From Chris Norton Walker

Really fun gig at last night with


On Monday, KS1 walked to the War Memorial to sketch the poppies and to lay the wreath from Harpenden Academy. Pupils discussed why the poppies had been placed at the War Memorial and why this year was especially important because it was 100 years since the end of WW1.


On Wednesday Herts County Council came to visit our Reception class to run a workshop for the children and parents of Ladybird class. We learnt to ‘Stop, Look, Listen and Think. ‘ We then set up a fake road in the classroom to practice crossing the road safely.


On Wednesday the Year 6 children enjoyed a wonderfully thought-provoking trip to the Foundling Museum in London to learn about the lives of poor children in Georgian and Victorian Britain.


Cross Country: A wonderful performance from our Year 5 and 6 six runners at yesterday’s tournament. All runners showed excellent commitment and resilience, not to mention superb sportsmanship.


Our school dog has a name! After a successful ‘wooferendum’ the votes were as follows: Rosie: 50 votes Red: 33 votes Rosie Red: 115 votes Welcome Rosie Red, there is a lot of excitement over your arrival at school.


We have raised £184.20 for by wearing spots to school today. Thank you to all the children who dressed up and brought in their £1 donation.


After attending the Girls Football Tournament, Watford Ladies have invited all pupils from the schools attending to watch them play on Sunday for free. The staff at the gates will have the school names, so you just have to say which school you are from.


10,000 poppy petals released in our playground at our Remembrance assembly on Friday. Thank you to all for attending a very moving and thought provoking morning.


Massive congratulations to the Harpenden Academy Boys Football team on our first ever win!! We are very proud of you all.


Retweeted From abm catering

Our talented chef at has been busy making this lovely wheat sheaf for the pupil's harvest assembly! 🍃


Our EYFS class have been inspired by our recent visit from an artist and the art around the school, so have created their own masterpieces “a diplodocus and a stegosaurus”


Yesterday Year 6 enjoyed making guacamole - a favourite Mexican dish- linking to our Frida Kahlo project. I was particularly impressed how many children initially claimed to not like avocado but tried the new dish and actually loved it! Well done for having open minds.


Year 4 enjoyed a very exciting trip to Pizza Express this morning as part of our International month. Yummy!🍕


This is the amazing speed artist , here he is doing a speed portrait live for KS2, who do you think it is


What an amazing speed painting of Albert Einstein! By


We’ve got the fantastic artist Jon Hicks at Harpenden Academy today, what on earth could he be painting here?


How did this little fella know that our Reception class topic is Dinosaurs! He popped into our EYFS playground to visit us. How exciting!


Harpenden Academy's School Council are running a book stall after school today to raise money for victims of the Indonesian Earthquake & Tsunami - Please Give Generously!


Year 4 Austen class developed their independent pedestrian road skills today by participating in a workshop run by HCC. They learnt how to cross safely at a zebra crossing, how to assess the risks on the road and how to identify a safe place to cross.


What an amazing effort this morning from everyone. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts - your effort to bake over 2000 cakes is overwhelming. Please bring your pennies at pick up - there are still some delicious cakes left. A successful coffee morning!


Coffee morning tmw to support those fighting cancer. Leftovers for sale after school. Let’s reach our target of 2000 cakes. Happy baking!


An amazing cross country session this week under beautiful autumnal blue skies. Forty of us ran our hearts out around the common!


Afloat We have just set off on our way home. We've had a fantastic time but are looking forward to being home!


We are now winding down and getting ready for bed. We'll see you all tomorrow and can't wait to tell you about our adventures.


Some photos from todays adventures at Fellowship Afloat.


Thank you to Kasia Truefitt, Artistic Director of for running some mindfulness dance workshops for KS2. We thoroughly enjoyed them.


Photos to follow!


Our last full day at Fellowship Afloat. We've been out in the powerboats this morning. After lunch the children went on the high ropes - Jacob's Ladder and the Leap of Faith. Everyone challenged themselves and excelled; back on Trinty we had an afternoon of team games.


Just a few photos! Will include others in tomorrows Tweet! Night!

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Purpose and Aims


PSHE education is a planned, developmental programme of learning through which children and young people acquire the knowledge, understanding and skills they need to manage their lives now and in the future. As part of a whole-school approach, PSHE education develops the qualities and attributes pupils need to thrive as individuals, family members and members of society. PSHE education equips pupils to live healthy, safe, productive, capable, responsible and balanced lives. It encourages them to be enterprising and supports them in making effective transitions, positive learning and career choices and in achieving economic wellbeing. A critical component of PSHE education is providing opportunities for children and young people to reflect on and clarify their own values and attitudes and explore the complex and sometimes conflicting range of values and attitudes they encounter now and in the future. Developing an understanding of themselves, empathy and the ability to work with others will help pupils to form and maintain good relationships, develop the essential skills for future employability and better enjoy and manage their lives.


  • To build confidence, resilience and self-esteem
  • To identify and manage risk
  • To make informed choices and understand what influences their decisions
  • To recognise, accept and shape their identities
  • To understand and accommodate difference and change
  • To manage emotions and to communicate constructively in a variety of settings.


Our curriculum is categorised in 2 ways

  • Breadth - which gives pupils experiences across the PSHE and SRE curriculum
  • Depth - which helps pupils to think and act like young citizens

Whilst coverage is our goal for the “breadth” element, repetition and increasing the understanding via mastery learning is our goal for the “depth” element.

Our curriculum drivers shape our approach to teaching PSHE so that every opportunity is taken to relate PSHE to the needs of our pupils. PSHE is studied weekly in both Key Stages, either through PSHE sessions, values sessions or News and Views sessions.  Cross curricular links and Learning Outside the Classroom are incorporated where possible and meaningful.

Progression and Assessment

Our progression includes 12 units which are visited once in KS1 and twice in KS2 at a more challenging level at each stage. We set out our expectations around the Harpenden Academy PSHE scheme (adapted from the Ealing scheme). We use the Chris Quigley three cognitive domains to ensure each child receives the right support and challenge: Basic (We call it Paddling), Advancing (we call it Snorkelling) and Deep (we call it Diving). It is expected that the vast majority of pupils will have an Advancing understanding by the end of each milestone (KS1, Lower KS2 and Upper KS2) and some will have a Deep understanding.

Assessment and reporting

We will assess the pupil’s depth of understanding each year using the PSHE scheme assessment guidance.

Monitoring, Evaluation and Improvement

The role of the leader in monitoring pupil’s outcomes is to audit teachers’ judgements via book looks as well as ensuring breadth and depth of curriculum through book looks, learning walks and learning talks (with pupils). Strengths and areas for development are identified and actions shared with staff then reviewed to assess impact. Book looks are done collectively in staff meetings and then collated by the leader. The subject leader action plan and monitoring evidence is kept in the monitoring file and evidence is gathered and celebrated in the PSHE and SMSC portfolios.

Harpenden Academy Elves Wrap over 200 presents for Charity, December 2018

On Saturday our very own Harpenden Academy elves wrapped almost 200 gifts, generously donated by HA families to make Christmas day full of joy and hope for children who are currently living in care. Last year our gifts were extremely well received and this year we've over doubled the number being gifted.

The children (and parents) worked tirelessly all morning to wrap and label all the gifts, also creating beautiful cards to send to each child. Thank you all for your time, generosity and energy.

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Action for Happiness, 7th December 2018

This week all classes (and hopefully teachers and other staff) have been taking part in the Action for Happiness Kindness calendar - with a new kindness challenge every day as part of Do Good December!

It has been wonderful to see the children embracing this concept so openheartedly and we hope some of the actions have been brought home. In Year 6 we had so many secret positivity notes delivered to our classroom on Thursday that we had to set up books to stick them all in! The calendar fits with our value of the month - Hope - as showing kindness is a way of spreading hope. Please feel free to complete Saturday and Sunday's challenges at home:

Do good december

Crucial Crew Workshop

Grow a £1

Class Baking

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Feeling Good Fortnight

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Paul Geraghty

Paul Geraghty, amazed the children with his storytelling and illustrations. His illustrations will be displayed in school once we have frames for them.

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George Fouche Motivational Speaker

Who told us about his life and the positive impact a growth mindset had had on his challenging life so far.


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Forest School

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Cowboy Day

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Making pizzas with our ABM Caterers

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Waste Ninja

We learnt how to not waster food.

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Learning Playground Games in Family Groups


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At Harpenden Academy we teach the children and teachers mindfulness techniques to provide them with tools to support their mental and emotional wellbeing. We often have mindfulness breaks during the day to pause, relax and clear our busy minds. Sometimes we do our mindfulness outdoors looking up at the sky and listening to the sounds around us. At other times we go into the sensory room and use the calming equipment in there to help us enjoy being in the present moment.  Year Six shared their mindfulness learning with the whole school in an assembly - explaining all about the different aspects of mindfulness they use, from mindful eating to mindful listening and mindful breathing. They also talked about how mindfulness helps them outside school - for example getting back to sleep if they wake in the night or steadying their nerves before a swimming gala.

Small Acts of Kindness Project

In January 2017 the school council (inspired by the Queen's Christmas speech) wanted to set up a Small Acts of Kindness project in which each class created their own small act of kindness to carry out in our local community. Activities ranged from baking cookies for our local fire station to singing at a local old people's home to organising a whole school fun run to raise money for refugees. Everyone felt really proud to have made a positive difference to other people's lives, near and far.

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Mini-Police Project

During the Spring Term 2018, our Year Five pupils were took part in Hertfordshire's Mini Police project - the first school to be chosen to pilot the project. It was an amazing experience with the children learning a huge amount about what being a police officer involves - from police dog handling to riot training to how to tackle anti-social behaviour. The children shared their learning with the rest of the school in a Mini Police assembly as well as being invited to an awards ceremony at the Hertfordshire Police Headquarters. What wonderful role models these children are to the rest of our school and community.

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People Who Help Us

In the Spring term 2018 our Reception children were learning about People Who Help Us. Each week a different person came to visit the children, talk about their job and answer the children's questions: mountain rescue dog handler, physiotherapist, nurse, police dog handler, postman and paramedic. Each visit was inspiring and informative, not to mention lots of fun!

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Remembrance Day, November 2017

Thank you to our Elliot and Emily from SJL who played the last post on the cornet. The lovely Vicar Dennis Stamp for his Remembrance speech and to Barnaby’s Grandad, Mike, for sharing his thoughts and memories with us. Year 5 did a moving recital of the poem ‘ In Flanders Fields.’ It was a lovely shining example of school, parents and the local community coming together.

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Icing biscuits for Poppy Day with our ABM Caterers

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School Rules

During family groups on Wednesday Sapphire group came up with three school rules: be respectful, be happy, be kind. The children then acted out scenarios showing these three rules in action. Can you guess which rule is being acted out in each photo?

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