Micklehurst shows the way forward

MICKLEHURST All Saints CE Primary School places a strong emphasis on the importance and value of physical education, mental health and well-being from Early Years through to children in Key Stage 2.As well as having achieved the Gold School Games Mark for commitment, engagement and delivery of competitive sport, they are one of only a handful of schools to have been awarded the AcSEED award for promoting the need for high quality emotional wellbeing and mental health support.

Every morning before lessons begin, all children and staff participate in the daily ‘wake up, shake up’ which sees trained children sports leaders lead classes in a five-minute workout to music.

As well as leading these morning routines, sport leaders co-ordinate and deliver lunchtime activities and assist in the delivery of after school clubs.

The sports ambassadors programme provides and develops valuable life skills of leadership, resilience and determination. After lunch all children participate in a mindfulness session to focus them for afternoon learning.

Children take part in two hours of physical education each week across a broad range of sports and benefit from specialist Tameside Active sports coaches delivering many of the sessions.

Within Early Years and Key Stage 1 the emphasis in PE is on building the fundamentals of agility, balance and co-ordination as well as the fundamental movement skills, including running, throwing, catching, jumping and skipping. Children then apply these skills into team games where they develop their skills.

During Key Stage 2, children take part in different sports including tag rugby, basketball, hockey, athletics, volleyball, rounders, dance, gymnastics and cheerleading.

As well as participating in these sports in school, teams also compete in competitions across Tameside and through the Mossley and Carrbrook Schools Partnership.

Most recently the street dance team won the Tameside Street Dance Competition at Active Copley.

In all competitions, children honour the core values of sportsmanship, passion, self-belief, respect, honesty, determination and teamwork which are underpinned by the school’s Christian values of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

Swimming is also an important focus with lessons extended beyond the basic requirement to provide them from year four upwards to starting children in year three as a means of ensuring that as many children as possible meet the national curriculum target of swimming 25 metres by the end of year six.

A big emphasis is placed on National Sports Week and providing children with opportunities to participate in as wide a range of activities, including hula hooping, skipping, tri-golf, extreme gymnastics, curling, fencing and participation in the annual winter games at the Chill Factore, Manchester.

Thanks to the PTFA, the school recently received new multi-purpose sports and football kits which has further inspired the children at competitions and reinforced their team spirit.

Amanda Hamlett, year three teacher and PE co-ordinator, said: “The importance of physical activity, mental health and wellbeing and healthy lifestyles is firmly embedded into all aspects of life in school.

“As well as participating in a wide range of sports activities, children also learn about healthy eating and living, growing vegetables in our outside learning spaces as well as collecting eggs from the school ducks.

“Children leave school with a wide range of experiences that should help them to continue with healthy lifestyles as they move through secondary school and into adulthood.”

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