New Step-back Song lands

‘When you are in a class
And you’re stuck on a task
And you don’t know what to do’

Some of the lines from the new Step-back song, recently recorded and which is one of the latest additions to the growing suite of Step-back resources. This time last year Step-back was in its pilot phase; now 12 months on, it is set to become an established programme for schools with further developments underway.

Positive Eye is proud to share the Step-back song

The Step-back song was written for children. Music, dance, song, rhythm, chants, raps all support children to engage – to engage in the learning process which sometimes they want to find easier.

Tom McCormack is the lyricist and composer behind the song. He has beautifully captured the story of a child in a class who is stuck on a task and doesn’t know what to do, but with the use of the right language and knowing how to ask for help, they learn – and get the knack!

Thanks to Jamm Studios, St Helens for your time in professionally recording this song within a small budget affordable to the small but incredibly passionate Positive Eye. You along with Tom made this dream possible.

All copyright for the Step-back song belongs to Positive Eye Ltd.

Step-back a whole school approach to enabling independent learners – one year on
Read on for a further update on how far Step-back has developed in the last year and the plans for the future
Step-back Trainers
In December 2018 an initial cohort piloted the Step-back Train the Trainer Course and in December 2019 became the first Step-back Trainers to be officially registered with Positive Eye. This means they are entitled to deliver the Step-back Practitioner course and support schools in their region to achieve Step-back School Status. As the initial Step-back Trainers received their registration, the second cohort of 15 embarked on their course and are now well on the way to completion within the next few months.

Step-back Practitioners
In addition to their own course the Step-back Trainers also piloted the successful delivery of the Step-back Practitioner course. The first Step-back Practitioners are currently receiving their Certificates of Recognition and are beginning the promotion of Step-back as a whole school approach across the region’s schools.

Step-back School Status
A set of standards has been established for schools to work towards achievement of Step-back School Status. Over the coming months more schools will begin their journey towards achieving these standards, selecting staff to be trained as Step-back Practitioners, raising the awareness of Step-back with all staff and starting the process of embedding Step-back approaches.

Step-back course developments
In the year long pilot phase both the Step-back Trainer and the Step-back courses have been subtly modified to ensure maximum effectiveness. Setting and maintaining clear standards for both the Step-back training programmes has been a main focus. An external moderator who is also an experienced Additional Learning Needs (ALN) professional has been employed by Positive Eye to ensure that fair and equitable marking and moderating systems are in place.
The long term aim for Step-back is that all professionals working in a teaching or support capacity employ Step-back approaches, use the language of Step-in, Step-back and importantly understand the role they have in ‘supporting’ the child, young person and their family.
A new Step-back course for Mentors has been developed for professionals working in a support role with children, young people and their families, but who are not directly working in education settings. E.g.: Youth Workers, Family Support Workers and Social Workers. This one day course will teach the core principles and approaches of Step-back. Mentors will be equipped with Easy-Easier Learner’s Voice resources appropriate for use in the home environment. Their role will be to promote these approaches within the family, encouraging the use of Step-in, Step-back.

Step-back Parents Resources
Step-back resources have been developed to support parents to understand the concept of Step-back. Parents/carers as the primary carers are at the frontline of supporting their child/young person towards independence. Specific resources currently used by the child/young person and practitioners within the education setting have been developed and modified to share with parents.

Three important Step-back themes:
For all stakeholders, professionals, learners and parents the Step-back approach has three important key elements:
• Role: To understand your role in relation to others in maximising the child/young person’s independence
• Voice: To listen and respond to the voice of the child, young person or person
• Step-in, Step-back: To know how to scaffold support, understanding the What, How and Why of support
In the words of the Step-back song, the long term aim for Step-back, is to hear children and young people saying…

‘So can you step back, step back won’t you take a step back
Cos I’m on the right track!’
(Step-in, Step-back Song © Positive Eye Ltd 2020)