Aspiration refers to hope and ambition. We all have dreams about the future. These are our aspirations. Inspiration, on the other hand, refers to the urge to feel or do something. As human beings, we are inspired by other people and different things that surround us. Famous people, real life stories, books, movies, songs, pictures – they all motivate us and shape our aspirations.
We, as teachers and parents, can help children to discover their own aspirations and to be inspired. We can even nudge them in a particular direction. What we cannot do, or it will be an endless struggle if we try, is to force aspiration on our children. At Newquay Primary Academy we aim to encourage aspiration naturally through our values-based approach and strong programmes of character and careers education.
As a values-based school, at Newquay Primary Academy we focus on character-building. “Character” is defined by qualities and virtues which, alongside performance, can bring about a lasting impact and can raise aspirations for life. We build in a range of opportunities for our pupils to taste aspiration, to be inspired and to develop an understanding of who they are, who they might be, and exactly what they are capable of.
Our teachers, for example, understand that the skills involved in resilience are almost as important as cognitive skills for achieving educational qualifications by adulthood. They use every opportunity to make sure that pupils understand the importance of being resilient. Our school culture is one where every child knows that when they make mistakes we always allow them the opportunity to have a second chance. This is how we learn and grow.
Our curriculum promotes learning and personal growth and development. The wide range of extra-curricular activities we offer are designed to enrich the experience and meet the unique needs of each child.
We teach our pupils how to grow into positive, responsible people, who can work and co-operate with others while developing knowledge and skills, so that they achieve their true potential and set themselves the highest aspirations.
Broadening horizons in Cornwall
At Newquay Primary Academy we want our pupils to be excited by the possibilities open to them in the future. Cornwall is a fantastic place to live and work! There is so much happening here that is truly inspirational. We want our children and young people to be aware of all the opportunities on their doorstep; and we want this awareness to ‘inspire young people to aspire’.
We provide our pupils with a range of meaningful experiences, visits and visitors to teach them about the world of work and open their eyes to future careers they may not have thought about. Local businesses and employers are invited to ‘Give an Hour’ and make a difference by sharing their story and helping children understand more about the world of work. Our Year 5 and 6 children will take part in specific activities to better understand the world of work.
We work closely with Newquay Tretherras’ Careers Lead to plan and coordinate our school based careers programme. This includes joint activites such as STEM projects. Older pupils from Newquay Tretherras will mentor and support our more able pupils, fostering university aspirations at an early stage.
As part of the Cornwall Education Learning Trust we are also working closely with the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Careers Hub to transform our careers education programme by linking with Cornish businesses. To see where career pathways can lead our children and young people, watch a quick sneak preview into the lives of the Young Talent in Cornwall, in partnership with Cornwall Chamber of Commerce and the 30 Under 30.