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Discover Pathway

Pupils following the Discover Pathway are based at the Harraton site of Harry Watts Academy, the pathway lead is Nichola Edmiston.

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In line with the other pathways in HWA our curriculum is based on individual pupil EHCP targets and we have a commitment to personalise the curriculum to the unique qualities and needs of each pupil, and a teaching and learning approach that is flexible and informed by specialist knowledge of the strengths and difficulties associated with Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC) in general. Central to this is the health and well-being of our pupil community; we believe that it is of paramount importance to the physical, mental and emotional health of our pupils that individuals feel they are making progress and attaining at an appropriate level.

Discover 1

The Discover Pathway is our formal learning pathway for pupils engaged in subject specific learning, but working significantly below age related expectations. On the Discover Pathway, pupils will complete more structured ‘taught’ lessons in different traditional subject areas such as history, computing and science. Although this pathway is more ‘subject specific’, it is highly differentiated to meet the needs of the pupils.

Discover 2

Our Discover Pathway is:

  • for all learners (primary and secondary) who are working on a more formal curriculum (mostly above progression step 4). This pathway is based on the national curriculum however it has been differentiated and adapted to a level that is accessible for the students. The curriculum also focuses on EHCP targets and incorporates activities to develop communication and social skills.
  • planned by class teachers and subject specialists.
  • sequenced according to a scheme of topics rooted in real life experiences, developing their knowledge of their surroundings and the world around them. (see topic maps).
  • delivered through subject-specific learning (including maths and English), cross curricular opportunities and work-related learning.
  • assessed using individual EHCP targets and a bespoke combination of frameworks chosen to best reflect the progress of each learner, Bsquared progression steps, entry level 1 to 2 if appropriate, phonics assessments and SCERTS.

All pupils will be assessed annually to ensure they have the opportunity to progress within their pathway.

  • Plan to be accredited in Key stage 4 through AQA English and Maths Entry level and functional skills. Bronze and Silver Duke of Edinburgh Awards.


The formal learning pathway begins with a range of cross curricular topics which provide opportunities to build on subject specific knowledge. As pupils progress throughout the school, topics become more focused on life skills and preparation for adulthood themes and in Key stage 4 learning is based on the accreditation pathway the student is following. Students continue to a wide range of exciting, engaging activities to contextualise their learning. See our example timetables and half termly topic maps.

Dicover topics

All activities in our timetable are designed to help the children in the Discover pathway to meet their individual EHCP targets. 

The activities focus on the following key areas, with many activities developing a number of these areas simultaneously:

  • Cognition and Learning
  • Social, Emotional & Mental Health
  • Sensory, Physical Development & Life Skills
  • Communication & Interaction
  • Preparation for Adulthood

As well as this, in order to ensure we provide our learners with a well-rounded curriculum and to create exciting, engaging learning opportunities, creativity and an awareness of our world feeds through many of the activities planned each week.

Below is a rationale, explaining some of the sessions incorporated into the Discover timetable and why they are being used in the teaching and learning in the Discover pathway.

Circle Time - allows us to practise our social skills and group communication. It follows the same format each day to allow children to gain confidence in familiar routines and gives them the opportunity to take the lead. We have a movement break to work on gross motor skills. It is also a chance for the class to explore & understand their emotions by choosing how they feel and communicating why this is. 

Snack & Lunch communication, social interaction and life skills are the key focus during these times. Children are encouraged to request and prepare their preferred snack item and sit together to share meal times. Children are supported to become as independent as possible.

Outdoor Learning - children’s physical wellbeing is developed as they are encouraged to be active and adventurous in their learning. Children are able to self-regulate their emotions and sensory needs through the use of the outdoor facilities. As well as this there are many opportunities to work on communication and social skills as the children share activities with friends and supporting adults.

Reading for Pleasure and Relaxation - an opportunity for calming activities before lunch focussed on regulating emotions and developing a love of reading.

Creative Arts - these sessions cover music, dance, role play/drama, collage, painting and drawing. The activities encourage communication and vocabulary development, group attentionemotional regulation and body awareness.

PE, yoga, swimming - these activities all work on the children’s physical and sensory targets on their EHCP whilst, as always, providing many opportunities for communication, social skills and emotional regulation.

Specialist Rooms - the sensory pods allow opportunities for self-regulation of emotions, sensory integration, physical development and communication.

Social Skills - an opportunity for us to work on our social skills and interactions with peers and adults. The children communicate with one another to make choices about games, take turns, share games, express likes/dislikes and enjoy playing socially in a group. These games are supported by adults who will also provide games that will help to work on the children’s cognition and learning targets (e.g. number puzzles, positional language games)

Lego Therapy - social interaction, turn-taking skills, sharing, collaborative problem-solving and motor skills are all enhanced during this small group intervention.

An example timetable can be found at the bottom of this page.

News from our Discover Pathway Classes:

Birch Class News

Cedar Class News

Elm Class NewsMaple Class News

Oak Class News

Pine Class News

Willow Class News


Page Downloads Date  
Example Discover Timetable 10th Oct 2022 Download
Discover Pathway Curriculum Intent, Implementation and Impact 12th Jul 2023 Download
Topic Map Discover Autumn 1 Cycle 2 KS3 20th Sep 2023 Download
Topic Map Discover Autumn 1 Cycle 1 KS4 20th Sep 2023 Download
Topic Map Discover Spring B Cycle 2 KS3 18th Mar 2024 Download
Topic Map Discover Spring 2 Cycle 1 KS4 18th Mar 2024 Download
Topic Map Discover Spring A Cycle 2 KS3 18th Mar 2024 Download
Topic Map Discover Summer 1 Cycle 1 KS4 07th May 2024 Download
Topic Map Discover Summer A Cycle 2 KS3 07th May 2024 Download
Topic Map Discover Summer B Cycle 2 KS3 07th May 2024 Download