Children from across the world gather in London to celebrate success in International poetry, art and song competition

Children from across the world gather in London to celebrate success in International poetry, art and song competition

Never Such Innocence (NSI) has successfully engaged almost 7,000 children from over 350 schools in 43 countries in commemorating the First World War through poetry, art and song. Today, the commemorative charity will celebrate its fourth and final centenary competition, in which children from across the world have submitted poems, artwork or songs inspired by the events of the Great War.

NSI launched the centenary competition last autumn and the winners have now been selected from every corner of the United Kingdom, as well as Greece, Malaysia, New Zealand, France, Canada, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Rwanda and the USA, to name but a few. 

New Play Kit Designed for Children’s Development

Kitcamp

Kitcamp, founded by Anna Saunt and Jonathan Lord, have introduced a new build-and-play modular kit as an alternative to, or to complement, fixed play equipment. The innovative kit is more versatile than traditional fixed play furniture and the advantage is that children build structures themselves, which helps with learning and social development.

The product is unique, comprising of interlocking panels which fit together in different configurations, so children can assemble large objects like castles, dens and spaceships to their own design and limited only by their imagination. It’s ideal for primary schools but can be used in various ways by different age groups, even as a useful storage system or as classroom dividers.

Explore and Learn

Young Boccia champs officially open new school playground

Creative Play

YOUNG Boccia champions have celebrated their win by helping to officially open their school’s new Creative Play playground.

The Kent County winning youngsters from Greenfields Community Primary School in Maidstone were picked to join the school’s Chair of Governors, Pam Payne, to officially open the new outdoor equipment, designed, manufactured and installed by outdoor play experts Creative Play.

Boccia, which is a precision ball sport related to bowls, is primarily a disability sport and schools, such as Greenfields, also have teams for children who have learning difficulties.

Greenfields has found that being part of a Boccia team has given those pupils a real confidence boost and created friendships that have made them feel more inclusive.

FestABLE event to be held at SEND college

Sally Phillips FestABLE

Guest speakers including TVs Sally Phillips will gather for FestABLE on June 2 as part of the UK’s first national festival dedicated to specialist learning.

Youtubers, assistive technology experts and professionals working with young people who have special educational needs and disabilities will attend the event. 

Young people have helped plan FestABLE’s diverse programme which includes all sorts from the chance to go in the country’s only wheelchair-accessible hot air balloon and play with eye-gaze controlled computer games, to sessions on speech and occupational therapy, Education, Health and Care plans, early autism intervention, SEND reform and removing the barriers to achievement.

Children's charity launches first hospital-based pre-school

Piggles Trust

A charity set up by a family in memory of their late daughter has launched the first hospital-based pre-school, Piggles Trust,  in the country at Southampton Children’s Hospital.

Piggles Trust, founded by Caroline and Edward Martin from Andover, aims to provide early years education to young patients nationwide.

In partnership with University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust’s workplace nursery provider Taplins, the charity has funded the first nursery nurse in the NHS.

Prior to the development of Piggles Trust, there was no provision for delivering pre-school education for children aged two to five while in hospital – despite being a crucial age for learning and development.

Innovative teaching helps students overcome hurdles

PiXL Edge

PiXL Edge helps teachers and students to develop attitudes and skills that will help them in life and beyond.  We can easily take life-skills like booking train tickets or opening a bank account for granted. To most, they might seem simple, but if you haven’t been shown or been given the confidence, these everyday tasks can suddenly become a hurdle in life. 

Students at Ashcroft have significant barriers in life. Many have struggled to cope in education because of their mental health or life experiences and 46% of students are looked-after children. As part of their work to ensure their students develop essential life skills to help overcome these barriers, Ashcroft have signed up to the PiXL Edge programme.

Lifesaving app combating mental health and bullying in schools

Tootoot

Recently, a Year 6 pupil in a Manchester based Primary School used tootoot to get in touch with a member of staff to seek support as she had been having suicidal thoughts. At a time when at least half of suicides amongst young people relate to bullying, and half of the people bullied in the past year have never told anyone due to fear, embarrassment or lack of faith in existing support systems (Ditch the Label’s annual survey 2017), it is more important than ever that we address the problem of bullying and cyberbullying in our schools, colleges and universities.

Safeguarding in schools is fundamental to protecting students’ wellbeing and attainment. When bullying or mental health issues go unresolved, students are increasingly turning to self-harm. 

Plastic tokens promote good behaviour in children with additional needs

Plastic tokens promote good behaviour in children with additional needs

Token economy and other ‘concrete aids’ can have a measurable impact in the classroom for children with additional needs, according to experts. 

The use of non-tangible rewards, such as verbal or written praise, is typical in schools. How ever, children with additional needs can experience difficulties understanding that such praise equates to future rewards.

The exchange of tangible rewards – objects that pupils can see and physically hold –is known to help enforce that the praise is both real and contemporaneous with the displayed behaviour, forming a ‘contract’ between the teacher and pupil.  

Adopting Adaptive Learning: A teacher's Guide

Adaptive Learning

Part of the thriving edtech industry, Adaptive Learning fuses education with IT using computers as interactive learning devices. It presents educational content and resources to the user according to their unique needs.

It’s also veiled in mystery, jargon and scepticism. Hasty investments by Venture Capitalists into half-baked solutions have seen many a school stuck with a learning product rushed to market that ultimately does little to add value to the classroom.

A buzzword and a black hole

Enticingly, adaptive learning promises to feed the technical appetites of the digitally native youth; to deliver incrementally better learning experiences and outcomes; and to relieve busy teachers of the paper work and reporting that cloud their evenings and weekends.

Mental health, friendships and bullying amongst top pupil concerns, data from 650 schools finds

Tootoot

More than 11,500 reports were gathered from 650 schools over a two-year period from users of Tootoot’s award-winning anti-bullying and reporting app. Pupils were given the opportunity to use the app to anonymously report issues that were troubling or concerning them. Similarly, teachers used the platform to log pupil incidents and concerns they had observed.