All children at Swallowdale have many opportunities to participate in a range of extra-curricular activities delivered by expert coaches and teachers throughout the year. Traditional and non-traditional sports are covered in response to pupil feedback, so as to encourage our children to try new things, improve their fitness and join local clubs offering alternative physical activities beyond the school day. Some of the extra-curricular clubs that will be on offer throughout this coming year include football, basketball, netball, work-it-weekly, cheerleading, yoga, Tri-Golf, dance, athletics and badminton. Some take place during lunch times, whilst others are offered as after-school activities. Many of our clubs enable our children to practice and take part in local competitions too.
Through our affiliation with MBSSPAN, Swallowdale participate in the School Games Mark whereby children are invited to represent our school with pride at a range of competitive sporting events. Across this range of events, we encourage children to apply and showcase their skills at different levels throughout the year. Their confidence grows through the inspire, develop and excel categories of events which provide all pupils with opportunities to engage. These experiences nurture children’s physical competence, confidence and holistic well-being whilst also offering our gifted and talented pupils opportunities to shine at performance level. Competitions during the Autumn term that Swallowdale aim to participate in are as follows: Tri-Golf, Sports Hall Athletics, Basketball and Football.
Some of our children have also taken part in the Cross Country running events at Longfield this term. All children across KS1 and KS2 were offered this opportunity and those who could take part represented their school with pride, determination and resilience in order to achieve their best. We are extremely proud of them for flying high!
Towards the end of every academic year we celebrate National School Sports Week. This is an enrichment week whereby the children are given the opportunity to try a broad range of sporting activities which are not part of their usual curriculum coverage. Last June, the sessions included wheelchair basketball, skateboarding, maypole dancing, circus skills, cheerleading and more! This year, our children will have some similar opportunities, but also some new ones – watch this space!
Our annual school KS1 and KS2 sports days also coincide with this week, whereby families are invited in to celebrate the children’s sporting achievements. Our children take part in a circuit of events during their sports day and accumulate team points to celebrate at the end.
In September of this year, we were lucky enough to have Dan the Skipping Man join us for an inspiring day. He worked with classes from KS2 to develop their skipping skills. This has become one of our active lunchtime initiatives and lunch time supervisors were also offered training so as to support children on their paths to becoming skipping experts!
Following Play Leader training during Autumn Term 1, our year 6 sports leaders work alongside the pupil ambassadors to provide organised lunchtime activities that encourage children to be physically active across KS1 and KS2. The games chosen by the leaders are not just designed to increase the children’s heart rate and boost their 60 active daily minutes, but they also help those who find it difficult to play with others by providing the opportunities to collaborate and communicate in a fun and respectful way. This also promotes teamwork, friendship and determination whilst giving sports leaders opportunities to develop, learn, shine and inspire others. Our KS1 children particularly benefit from working with these older role models in school.
We have once again launched our WOW travel tracker scheme to encourage all children to travel actively to and from school. The children need to travel actively to school three times a week for an entire month to earn a themed badge. A competition was also launched across the school to design a banner that encourages the children and families to travel actively. Huge congratulations to Freya whose banner now hangs proudly outside the school gates.