In addition to our curriculum, we also incorporate the following;
young @ heart
This is something we introduce to our children from the Spring term onwards. In consultation with our parents, we identify a group of 10 children who will embark on a 6/7 week intergenerational project at the local care home in Wingate. Simultaneously, a group of 10 elders are identified by the care home staff and associated families. Then, once a week, the group travel up to Divine Care Home, to spend over an hour with the elders, engaging in a variety of activities eg painting, dancing, playing games, singing, gardening, baking etc. The project is planned by nursery staff in collaboration with the Activities Co-ordinator at the home, to ensure the activities are relevant and meaningful for children and elders alike.
Having led this project for two consecutive years, we have been able to prove the impact on the children in terms of their personal, social, emotional, and communication and language development through our tracking systems and conversations with parents. As for the elders, the impact on them is very much ‘in the moment’, as the majority of them are living with dementia.
the barn @ easington
The Barn at Easington is set within a beautiful thirty acre farm on the east coast and at the edge of Hawthorn Dene.
Nicola Balfour, our friend and artist educator, lives at the Barn and runs outdoor activities for families to take part in. Having taken groups of children to the barn for a few years now, we know and value how special these sessions are, so as well as making occasional visits, we promote them to our parents, in the hope that they visit and benefit from the activities as a family.
Recognising that some of our children may never have been to the theatre before, we fundraise money with families to be able to take all our children to see a production at Christmas. We travel on a coach, using a local company from Wingate, to either the Gala Theatre in Durham, The Arc at Stockton, or sometimes to one of the theatres in Newcastle. This is a very special visit that introduces our children to performing arts.
During Covid-19, we invited a theatre company into school to perform for the children, which was also a very special experience and enjoyable.
museums and galleries
Although we don’t routinely plan visits to museums or galleries, we seize opportunities to take small groups of children to such places, in line with current projects or special interests. A typical example of this would be when we took a group of children interested in dinosaurs to visit the Discovery Museum in Newcastle.