Personal Development – The Big Picture

At Harrogate Grammar School students in Years 7 to 11 follow a Personal Development programme called ‘The Big Picture’ which incorporates elements of Personal, Social, Health Education, Citizenship and Careers Educations and Guidance. This is delivered by Form Tutors through Guidance lessons supported by assemblies and Super Learning Days.

Through a range of exciting activities in lessons, visiting speakers, workshops, themed days and the opportunity to complete two weeks work experience in Year 11 they are encouraged to develop the skills and understanding that are required to lead a confident, healthy and independent life. Students are empowered to develop mutual respect and the confidence to take control of their present and future. This is nurtured through a proactive, specialised and caring environment which promotes consistency, stability and respect for all.

Big Picture lessons are different to other subjects …… but do you know why?
Students will have the opportunity to study a range of topics each year and will develop important
skills such as:

  • The ability to express their thoughts, feelings and ability to listen to others
  • Learn to discuss emotions
  • Develop an awareness of right and wrong
  • Develop respect for others
  • Develop self respect and high self esteem
  • Learn how to keep safe and healthy
  • Make informed choices with confidence
  • Resolve conflict positively
  • Feel positive about themselves
  • Take responsibility for themselves and others
  • Participate in group and class discussions
  • Make real choices and decisions
  • Meet and work with other pupils and adults
  • Consider social and moral dilemmas at a local, national and global level
  • Ask for help/find information/provide advice
  • Learn how to cope with and prepare for change

‘The Big Picture’ Mission Statement

We aim for all Harrogate Grammar School students to be happy, healthy, confident young adults who can contribute to the world in which they live now and in the future as active responsible citizens. This will be achieved through an innovative, engaging and purposeful whole school programme which combines elements of PSHE, Citizenship and Careers and is outstanding in its provision.

Overarching Concepts in ‘The Big Picture’ Programme

Identity (their personal qualities, attitudes, skills, attributes and achievements and what influences these)

Relationships (including different types and in different settings)

A healthy (including physically, emotionally and socially) balanced lifestyle (including within relationships, work-life, exercise and rest, spending and saving and diet)

Risk (identification, assessment and how to manage risk rather than simply the avoidance of risk for self and others) and safety (including behaviour and strategies to employ in different settings)

Diversity and equality (in all its forms)

Rights (including the notion of universal human rights), responsibilities (including fairness and justice) and consent (in different contexts)

Change (as something to be managed) and resilience (the skills, strategies and ‘inner resources’ we can draw on when faced with challenging change or circumstance)

Power (how it is used and encountered in a variety of contexts including persuasion, bullying, negotiation and ‘win-win’ outcomes)

Career (including enterprise, employability and economic understanding

Essential life skills to develop in our students

‘The Big Picture’ Personal Development programme makes a significant contribution to the development of a wide range of essential skills such as self-management, active listening and skills of enquiry:

The intrapersonal skills required for self-management

  • Critical, constructive self-reflection (including being aware of own needs, motivations and learning, strengths and next steps for development, how we are influenced by our perception of peers’ behaviour)
  • Learning from experience to seek out and make use of constructive feedback
  • Setting challenging personal goals (including developing strategies to achieve them and knowing when to change them)
  • Making decisions (including knowing when to be flexible)
  • Recognising some of the common ways our brains can ‘trick us’ or ‘trap us’ in unhelpful thinking (including generalisation, distortion of events, deletion of information, misconceptions or misperceptions about the behaviour of peers)
  • Resilience (including self-motivation, adaptability, constructively managing change including setbacks and stress)
  • Self-regulation (including managing strong emotions e.g. negativity and impulse)
  • Recognising and managing the need for peer approval
  • Self-organisation (including time management)

The interpersonal skills required for positive relationships

  • Active listening
  • Empathy
  • Communication (non-verbal and verbal including assertiveness and recognising how this differs from aggressive and passive behaviour; being able to present and communicate ideas, arguments and thoughts effectively)
  • Team working (including agreeing clear and challenging outcomes, facilitation, co-operation, networking and the ability to provide, receive and respond to, constructive feedback and take on different roles; the ability to recognise and learn from others’ experience)
  • Negotiation (including flexibility, self-advocacy and compromise)
  • Recognising and utilising strategies for managing pressure, persuasion and coercion
  • Responding to the need for positive affirmation for self and others

Skills of enquiry

  • Formulating questions
  • Gathering and using data (including assessing the validity and reliability of sources of data and using a variety of sources)
  • Analysis (including separating fact from opinion)
  • Planning and deciding
  • Recalling and applying knowledge creatively and in novel situations
  • Drawing and defending conclusions using evidence and not just assertion
  • Identification, assessment (including prediction) and management of risk
  • Evaluating social norms
  • Reviewing progress against objectives

Curriculum Overview – Key Stage 3 and 4

The Big Picture curriculum overview-KS3 & KS4