School Games Case Study: Using physical activity to support transition to secondary school
The School Games, which is free for primary and secondary schools to access, allows children and young people to take part in targeted opportunities from a plethora of sports and activities. It creates experiences based on their motivations, competence and confidence ensuring the environment is inclusive, accessible and meaningful.
Through the school games, Active Lincolnshire position tackling inequalities at the forefront constantly seeking opportunities to support our school games organisers (SEOs). To truly develop a county school games, offer that is accessible, inclusive and provides positive experiences for all children and young people we provide support in various ways. We provide our school games organisers with insight, collaboration, meaningful connections, advocacy and support/advise where necessary.
For a recent project, Terry Plumb, school games organiser for the South West School Sport Partnership, provided support for primary school students transitioning to secondary schools using the power of movement, sport and physical activity. The project was born through consultation with primary and secondary school staff who identified the need to develop their physical literacy to remove barriers that exist in accessing the physical education programme in secondary school environments.
15 participants were chosen for the programme from 8 primary schools, all of whom are in receipt of an Educational Health Care Plan. Participants attended The Priory Ruskin Academy in Grantham for a 6-week long programme gaining the opportunity to familiarise themselves with school staff and their soon to be new surroundings. Young leaders from the secondary school worked with the participating pupils as part of a buddy system which provided a familiar face for when they returned to the school in September. Upon return, a trip to PGL was arranged to further reinforce the elements of improving self-confidence, resilience and teamwork through physical activity. Staff from Priory Ruskin have seen huge benefit from the programme and this targeted intervention will prove invaluable in the pupil’s transition to secondary school life.
Terry commented on the programme:
“Both the pupils and parents, in particular, found the sessions very enjoyable and beneficial. In the first physical activity session, one pupil was reluctant to join in and sat and spectated with his mum. One of the Y8 Sports leaders spotted this and went over to chat to the pupil encouraging him to give the activity a go. After a few minutes the child then joined in and fully immersed himself in that and the following sessions. The parents that attended the sessions found them invaluable in introducing their child to their future learning environment. One parent quoted that her child had been less than enthusiastic about his transition to Secondary education but after the first couple of sessions had wanted to try on his new Priory Ruskin Academy uniform/PE kit that he had been refusing to do so previously.”