Our Mission

This is what Jo should have written or at least started :-)

Our ‘grown-up’ and flexible approach to training is what young people want to enable them to study their preferred choices.  The Jam Academy’s method of delivering the curriculum will be based upon the 6 areas described here.  Please see the links for further information on curriculum content for the different school years.

1.  Creativity


At its heart, The Jam Academy has the belief that we are all born creative.  We feel that the current educational experience as learners move from primary to secondary does not harness this creativity and in fact makes every effort to knock it out of our children.  Please watch this video of Sir Ken Robinson talking about his views on this subject that mirror our own.  This has been an excellent way for parents to understand our fundamental ethos for our training and how we strive to be  different to those around us.


2.  Intelligence


Our school has chosen to work closely with the Multiple Intelligences (MI) Institute. This organisation supports schools and trains teachers in America, China and now this country.  Its methods are supported by decades of research and published materials by Howard Gardner, an educational practitioner on the UK’s teacher training syllabus.  Although Gardner’s work has influenced the classrooms of some teachers across the UK, despite its respect by the educational community, it is still yet to influence wider school planning and curriculum design.


Creativity improves our understanding and appreciation of our surroundings as well as our ability to solve problems and make products that have value in our community.  The Jam Academy’s leadership share a passion for learning that has purpose and is related to the real world; a passion which is also shared by the work of Howard Gardner at Harvard University.


Jam Theatre Studios

MI based and inspired curriculum delivery is centred on all of us having a profile of skills in 8 intelligences.  These intelligences are what adults use in the real world with varying degrees of success.  We all have our own profile of these intelligences with strengths in different areas. Intelligences work in combination, not isolation, everyone has a unique profile that changes over time.  No one is better than anyone else - and most importantly, intelligences can be improved. You CAN become more intelligent.


The Multi Intelligences are the tools for which allow people to achieve in the real world.  We do not agree that a test at the age of 10 in Buckinghamshire can demonstrate a child’s potential AND their intelligence.


3.  Care


The Jam Academy will provide education to develop the whole student and to prepare each learner for their future schooling and for life.  It will equip them with the necessary skills, positive attitude, and self-confidence to embrace life-long learning.


4.  Profile


Jo Noel-Hartley has worked for 15 years in corporate training, where a crucial part of top industry figures being successful is them understanding themselves.  If ‘Personal Profiling’ and the work of Myers, Briggs and Jung, is so crucial to that success, why are we not using this with our young people?  Like multiple intelligences, profiles change over time, understanding yourself and others is the only way we believe that creativity and passions can be harnessed.  We also believe that this understanding of others’ differences will create a more harmonious working environment.


5. Sense


The human brain was not designed to sit still and receive information under controlled circumstances for hours at a time, yet this is what we expect our young people to do in schools everyday.  A recent OFSTED report criticised the over labelling of children with learning difficulties as a way of covering up poor teaching in the classroom.  However, the timetable itself does not allow for the students to recharge their bodies to be able to continue to concentrate.


Sensory Integration is an understanding of how the brain of a young person receives information in their surroundings and can manage or not manage (in some cases) the information received through the 7 senses of the body (including the 2 hidden senses).  The internationally accepted research and theories of providing children with a ‘Sensory Diet’ by Wilberger & Wilberger and Zuckerman are part of the education systems in developed countries such as Australia, America and South Africa, but in England it is only used by some therapists and specialist educational establishments.


The Jam Academy’s timetables and lesson plans reflect these theories so that every student can be in an environment that supports their learning.


Are we not all different anyway?


The Jam Academy’s entire approach to learning embraces the individual needs of learners.  We are all different, and if we were not then the world would be a very boring place!


Many fear to be ‘labelled’ and many more fear the over-labelling of young people as a way to cover-up poor teaching.  The Jam Academy wishes for our students to understand how they learn, because once they leave our training they will need to continue to learn.


However, one crucial problem in the world of education is the miss-conception that if your child is SEN registered or just doesn’t fit in at school that this means they are not intelligent.  Many of the most influential people in the world, past and present, are these very people.


Richard Branson, Leonardo da Vinci, Picasso, Thomas Edison, Hans Christian Anderson, Albert Einstein, Alexander Graham Bell, George Washington, W.B. Yeats, Winston Churchill... we could go on.


Sensory Integration and Multiple Intelligences will be methods to understand and help ALL learners not just those on the SEN register.  Our multi-sensory teaching will give all students a deeper understanding of what they are learning.  Our young people will NOT be labelled with a ‘Learning Difficulty’, simply a ‘Learning Difference’. We will work hard to ensure that all our staff do not have a ‘teaching difficulty’.


The Jam Academy will make every effort to ensure that our facilities and equipment are available to all students, whatever their individual needs are.


The Jam Academy

The Jam Academy

Specialist Training for Performance & Production Arts