Matt Hood, Principal at Oak National Academy

@OakNational Academy today (9 Jun) launches its Summer Learning Support package of optional lessons and resources for use in both face-to-face summer schools or activities at home during the holidays.

The resources aim is to save teachers’ time, reduce their workload and give the best possible support to pupils over the summer to help reduce the impact the pandemic has had on their education. As well as academic content, the package includes a host of art, drama and sporting activities, designed with our partner organisations, to help boost children’s wellbeing and for their enjoyment after such a challenging year. 

These include the newly launched UK-wide 2021 Schools Time Capsule, in partnership with BAFTA Kids and Place2Be and new authors on Oak National Academy’s Virtual School Library (which is run in partnership with the National Literacy Trust). There are challenges, skills, and games from the Youth Sports Trust Active Recovery Hub and much more.

Oak’s Summer Learning Support offers lessons from Early Years through to Year 11, and focuses on ‘priority’ units and lessons which will help pupils prepare for their next academic year. These cover maths, English, science, history and geography, and include:

  • English and Literacy: lessons promote ‘reading for pleasure’ for younger year groups. For older pupils, the units cover nature poetry, Shakespeare and other popular GCSE texts, packaged to highlight essential learning points.
  • Maths: resources for younger pupils concentrate on initial multiplication and division and the early times table, while older pupils can practice their fractions and decimals and GCSE pupils develop their number, data and shape, and algebra skills. We also offer a taste of pre- A-level maths or functional skills useful in further education, training or work.
  • Science: units for younger pupils focus on plants and the natural world around them, while older pupils can work on understanding cell biology, organs, and different forms of energy. The units also comprehensively cover combined and single sciences at GCSE. 
  • History: helps younger pupils understand the concept of ‘a long time ago’, ancient civilisations and the story of Britain’s development. Older pupils will consolidate their knowledge of social and political history, as well as Nazi Germany and the Cold War. 
  • Geography: fieldwork investigations are available to support a lack of practical experience and cancelled field trips for some pupils. There are units for younger and older pupils to understand the differences between human and physical geography, as well as physical landscapes in the UK and the changing economic world.

New formative quizzes have been included to help teachers identify gaps in pupils’ knowledge and help build targeted interventions. There is also a full package of detailed guidance for teachers, parents and pupils, including explanations from subject specialists on how the summer curriculum has been designed. 

Oak National Academy is running a free webinar on Monday 14 June at 4pm for any teachers and schools considering setting summer learning activities, to provide advice and support on making use of the array of resources.

The additional support comes as research begins to show the effect disrupted education has had on pupils. According to the Education Endowment Foundation, research suggests pupils have made less academic progress compared with previous year groups and the attainment gap for disadvantaged children appears to have grown. For other pupils the disruption continues. In parts of the North West of England, almost one in three secondary school pupils are absent due to the spread of the Delta variant, along with one in five primary school pupils.  

Matt Hood, Principal at Oak National Academy, said: 

“Schools have worked fantastically hard to keep pupils learning this year and Oak National Academy is proud to have made a small contribution to teachers’ incredible efforts. 

“As we look ahead to the holidays, some teachers are considering hosting summer schools, or setting summer homework and projects to help prepare their pupils for next year. Where they are, we want this to be as hassle free as possible. 

"From today we’re thrilled to offer a comprehensive package of Summer Learning Support, designed by teachers, along with a host of creative and sporting activities and challenges. Teachers have identified priority topics for every year group, creating lessons and resources to best support pupils into their next year. And we’ve added new quizzes to help teachers identify the needs of their pupils and get everyone on track.

“Whether you are hosting a summer school, or supporting pupils and parents planning to learn at home, Oak is here to help.”


Oak National Academy launches new suite of resources to support summer learning 

17th May 2021: Oak National Academy, the UK’s online classroom, has developed a new package of optional resources for schools that are planning to host summer learning clubs or set pupils work for the break. 

Oak’s Summer Learning Support covers lessons from early years through to Year 11, and includes identified ‘priority’ units and lessons in maths, English, science, history and geography. They have been carefully designed by subject specialists to save teachers time if they choose to prepare summer learning either in school or for pupils to complete at home. A new set of quizzes will be added to the online resource as a tool to help teachers identify any gaps in pupils’ knowledge. There will also be a full package of detailed guidance for teachers, parents and pupils. 

Recognising the importance of pupils’ wellbeing and the impact the pandemic has had, Oak National Academy is balancing academic content with creative, active and mental health resources provided by brilliant partner organisations, including BAFTA, Place2Be and the National Literacy Trust.

Alongside the new Summer Learning Support, available from June 7th, Oak will keep its 40,000 teacher-led resources across 35 subjects available free for all schools. 

The Department for Education is offering funding for one to two weeks of teaching in school over summer. Oak’s specially-designated resources will save teachers time if they choose to run a summer school, set work for home learning or share resources with parents and pupils to use over the summer. 

Like all Oak resources, the optional Summer Learning Support has been created by teachers, for teachers and can be used as they are or adapted to meet pupils’ needs. 

Matt Hood, Principal at Oak National Academy, said:  

“We’ve spent the past year making a small contribution to the fantastic work schools have been doing to keep pupils learning.

“Now we want to help schools who are considering hosting summer schools, or setting summer homework to prepare pupils for next year. We’ve worked with teachers to identify priority topics for every year group, creating lessons to best support all pupils.  

“Whether you want to run a full summer school, set tailored learning to give pupils that additional support, or to share resources with parents looking for advice – Oak is here to help.” 

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