Introducing Cornerstones Yoimoji – time to put SMSC and FBV at the heart of your school

We’re delighted to announce our brand new product, Cornerstones Yoimoji.

Cornerstones Yoimoji helps you put spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development and fundamental British values (FBV) at the heart of your school. And in a way that will truly get your children engaged, enthused and excited.

Are you ready to transform your school’s approach to teaching values? It’s time to embrace the wonderful world of the Yoimoji and make FBV part of your children’s everyday learning and experience.

Why does teaching FBV well matter?

All schools must demonstrate that they have SMSC and FBV at the heart of their school’s work. With origins in the PREVENT strategy, it’s one of Ofsted’s requirements when they decide whether a school can be considered ‘outstanding’.

While it’s true that many schools already have some sort of values system in place, for most that means delivering through assemblies, the school council and behaviour strategies. Values are not typically integrated into daily practice, which is what Ofsted are looking for.

That’s why we think that schools can do so much more with values.

How can you get your children fully engaged? What will help them learn, understand and then display positive behaviour? Is there a way that you can make values-led learning interesting, exciting and loads of fun?

There is one answer to all of these questions: Cornerstones Yoimoji.

The Yoimoji have landed

The Yoimoji are 58 unique characters who each represent a series of core values linked to the FBV. They attend the fictional world of Yoimoji Academy, where they learn, play and solve problems that allow them to demonstrate their values.

What does the word Yoimoji actually mean? Well, it’s a portmanteau that combines the Japanese word ‘Yoi’, which means ‘good’, and ‘emoji’, which is slang for ‘character’. So Yoimoji stands for ‘good character’.

And that’s what the Yoimoji are all about. By working with and watching the Yoimoji tell their story, children get to see core values in action. The values become much more than just words – they are brought to life by the Yoimoji. Children see the values attached to real actions with clear consequences that they can relate to and understand.

We think that your children will fall in love with the Yoimoji characters. But we’ve designed Cornerstones Yoimoji for teachers too.

How does Cornerstones Yoimoji work?

We know that every school is different and that you may already have values in place. That’s why we’ve made Cornerstones Yoimoji extremely flexible.

You can choose to use all of the characters and adopt the Yoimoji wholesale in your school. Or you may prefer to select the characters that best reflect the values that you already have. It’s entirely up to you and what you think will work best in your setting.

In total, there are 24 values across 58 Yoimoji characters. Children work with new characters as they move up through year groups. In reception, they are introduced to six core values.

Those values are reinforced in Years 1 and 2, where children also get to meet new characters and values. The same happens again in Years 3 and 4, as the children develop and are able to understand more complex values.

In years 5 and 6, this structure repeats and the children work with all of the values, including those that are more tricky.

Storytelling plays a key role, which is why each Yoimoji has its own animated video story that includes an example of how the character reflects their value. Children then look for opportunities to display the behaviour themselves, before going on to create and tell stories of their own.

What do you get with Cornerstones Yoimoji?

The Yoimoji are designed to be ever present in school. Once you’ve chosen your characters and values, we have a range of resources to help you put the Yoimoji into everyday practice.

  • Teacher handbook
  • ‘Meet the Yoimoji’ introductory video
  • Assembly plan
  • 58 character video stories, posters, profiles and reward cards
  • Story planners for all ages, from Foundation stage to Year 6
  • Banners – one for each phase
  • Logbook covers

Resources for Cornerstones Yoimoji are available for schools to download directly from The Hub, any time and from anywhere. That means you also get access to ongoing updates and extra resources as we make and release them. You’ll also be able to buy special assembly award stickers from the Cornerstones online shop.

Ready to enter the world of the Yoimoji?

Hopefully, we’ve piqued your interest. To get a feel for the Yoimoji and how much fun teaching FBV can be for you and your children, watch our explainer video above or on YouTube. We’ve also made some of the Yoimoji video stories available to show you how the characters bring the values to life.

Free to schools that purchase the Cornerstones Curriculum

Cornerstones Yoimoji will be available from the end of September and is free to schools who purchase the Cornerstones Curriculum and only £150 for non-curriculum schools. So, keep an eye out for the Yoimoji coming soon, and we'll be in touch with our existing curriculum customers as soon as they're available on The Hub.


Published by

Melanie Moore

Mel is Curriculum Director and the author of the Cornerstones Curriculum. She writes, edits and oversees all curriculum materials and leads our creative team. Mel has over 20 years of primary teaching experience, including as a deputy headteacher. She has also been a teacher adviser and a local authority strategy adviser.

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