16 Dec Improving outcomes across the curriculum with Kaligo
Caldicotes Primary Academy case study
“Kaligo has delivered improvements across the curriculum. For example, we can use it to set spelling or handwriting lessons for various topics, all of which have lesson plans ready to use in Kaligo.” Nicola Mount, SENDCo at Caldicotes Primary Academy
- Immediate feedback
- Helps pupils meet age-related expectations
- Instant assessment of handwriting ability
- Reduces the workload for teachers
- An in-depth view of handwriting for each child
- The bigger picture of class handwriting progress
- 240 Pupils
- Aged 3 to 11
- Based in Middlesborough
About Caldicotes Primary Academy
Caldicotes Primary Academy is a ‘Good’ school of around 240 pupils ages 3 to 11 based in Middlesborough. The school is part of the Academies Enterprise Trust, comprising 54 schools. The Trust’s motto, ‘Inspiring every child to choose a remarkable life,’ is reflected through the leadership and teaching teams who work extremely hard to ensure that every child, regardless of their background, can achieve their full potential.
Following Covid, the school, along with most around the UK, noticed that handwriting progression had lapsed where pupils had been using technology for home-schooling. Handwriting has been a challenge nationally post covid along with other curriculum areas, due to the lack of consistent daily practice. However, the school are committed to closing gaps in children’s education particularly from the lost learning during the pandemic.
The school heard about Kaligo from one of the other schools within the Trust who were using it to get handwriting back on track post-pandemic and wanted to try it.
The importance of handwriting
“Along with reading, handwriting is an essential life skill, and letters must be formed correctly.” Says Nicola Mount, SENDCo at Caldicotes Primary Academy. “As a teacher, it’s impossible to stand over every child and see how a letter is formed. Sometimes you might see the result but not how they got there. Formation needs to be correct to write fluently and join one letter to the next; otherwise, a child will struggle with handwriting.”
“Once a child can consistently write in a cursive style, they can naturally spot an error in a spelling pattern as the letters don’t flow right. The way letters are formed also impacts the level of enjoyment when writing, so they must get it right.”
Caldicotes Primary Academy are a forward-thinking school that embraces technology, and they wanted to see whether Kaligo’s handwriting app could help with handwriting. Each child has their own iPad supplied by the school and they use the Kaligo stylus to complete the exercises on the App.
Technology for teaching
The Kaligo app uses the latest AI technology to monitor a child’s handwriting as they use a stylus to trace letter outlines on a tablet.
How a child writes letters can provide teachers with an overview of any neurolinguistic processes behind a child’s individual writing method. By seeing how they control the stylus on a tablet and how long they take to form different strokes or letters, teachers can easily see where a pupil is struggling and where they are thriving.
Using this information, teachers can see in a few minutes whether the pupil needs any extra support or whether there are any areas they need to spend more time on.
Kaligo uses machine learning (AI) which provides pupils with real-time, automated, and corrective feedback. Based on six years of research at the Laboratory IRISA/INSA, Kaligo has collected and analysed 15,000 handwriting strokes. Each handwriting stroke is analysed based on shape, direction, and order. It identifies any difficulties children as young as three may have with forming letters and numbers or even if they have pencil control issues.
“We started using Kaligo, and straight away, we could see it would be great for our pupils. Children now want to write more readily as they understand how to form letters. So, I can be confident that every child forms letters as they should be.”
“We use Kaligo from Year 1 to Year 6 for all children, and all pupils have their iPad and stylus.”
“We can see that the children love getting the instant rewards and that children who didn’t like writing are now willing and want to write. It’s brilliant.”
“The gamification with Kaligo of completing green circles to gain stars has definitely made it fun for the children. I hear them saying, “ooh, I got green” or “Miss, I got a star”. It’s so engaging the children love it.”
“Another group who have benefited is boys. So often, they struggle and find handwriting boring, but with Kaligo, they enjoy it.”
“For some of our pupils who have additional needs, we’ve used Kaligo for interventions, and this has engaged them in handwriting as there is less pressure on the iPad. If they make an error, they try again, making it less daunting than pen and paper.”
“Handwriting is now taught explicitly, and the children understand from the instant feedback what they need to do to improve. With Kaligo, our teaching is personalised for every child in the class but doesn’t add to the teacher’s workload.
“Through consistent practice, short, sharp sessions on Kaligo every day, we can see a significant improvement in their handwriting on the iPads, which also translates to paper. It’s lovely to see how quickly their writing is coming along.”
Improvements across the curriculum
“Kaligo has delivered improvements across the curriculum. For example, we can use it to set spelling or handwriting lessons for various topics, all of which have lesson plans ready to use in Kaligo.
“Now children are back at school, getting them more engaged in their learning means that although they have been off school and working at home, we can see that we are closing any learning gaps with the help of Kaligo.”
At Caldicotes Primary Academy, improving education for all is a daily goal on their journey to outstanding. But what’s next with Kaligo?
“We are delighted that with Kaligo, more children will achieve their age-related expectations this year, such as legible writing at speed for Year 4 and consistently forming letters in cursive for year 3.
“We are hoping to get parents more involved with Kaligo but setting additional tasks for those that wish to do more at home.”
“Our experience with Kaligo has been positive, and we are impressed with its impact on children’s handwriting at our school.”
Make sure to take a look at our other success stories.