Executive headteacher at St Paul’s C of E Primary School and Millbrook Park C of E Primary School
There’s a keen drive towards SATs in Y6, and like many things with a long run-up, they’re inevitably followed by a slump. What transpires afterwards can make for a very long half term – I’m sure I’m not the only head who would rather the tests took place in June, since the amount of bridge-burning that can take place can spoil a child’s time at school.
Foolishly – or wisely – we vary our timetable radically to include end of year shows, trips and the standard week away. In my view it’s not really the location that matters, but more the relationships that are created. I always try to book trips as early as possible (I’ve even booked in October!), as the class dynamics always change for the better.
Yes, some organisations are better than others (and I’ve tried most over the last 23 years!) but what I always look for are full, long days that seek to build the group as well as the child. If you have that, then it scarcely matters when or where you book.
Education Services Coordinator, Canal & River Trust (@canalrivertrust)
Whether you agree with the idea of SATs or not, there’s no denying that pupils and teachers alike breathe a sigh of relief once the tests have finished. This is a great time to treat your class to something fun! After being cooped up with endless sheets of paper, for me, the best kind of post-SATs reward trip would have to involve the great outdoors; the perfect antidote.
The benefits of learning outside the classroom are numerous and well documented, and include improved attention spans and development of confidence. All too often, emphasis is placed on what a child should learn, rather than where or how they learn it. Outdoor learning tackles this by offering hands-on learning experiences in the real world, rather than behind a desk.
The Canal & River Trust provides free, cross-curricular school trips to waterside destinations across England and Wales. Spending time by water is a powerful way to unwind, especially after the stress of SATs, and the stories our waterways hold are just itching to be discovered by curious young minds.
Sales Director, iFLY (@iFLY_UK)
SATs week is a critical time in the school calendar for pupils and teachers alike. Many schools will have prepared their pupils for weeks or months to ensure the school’s excellence is reflected in those final grades. It’s important, then, for teachers to acknowledge all the hard work that’s been put in once the tests are over.
A fun school trip is the perfect opportunity to remind pupils that hard work will always reap rewards. As a teacher, you can offer these rewards through a trip that will help pupils celebrate the end of exams and start of the summer, while also providing educational benefits that students can apply to the next phase of their school career.
At iFLY, we offer Wind Workshops for ages 5 to 11 that enable pupils to experience forces first-hand during a one-on-one indoor skydiving session in one of our vertical wind tunnels. It’s a thrilling, hands-on experience of forces at play, a memorable way of engaging your pupils in STEM topics and a great way to say ‘thank you’ for all their hard work throughout the year.
Schools executive at LEGOLAND Windsor Resort
The LEGOLAND Windsor Resort is a unique and exciting venue for learning outside the classroom. Schools can use our National Curriculum Map to navigate their way around the Resort, making sure their visit ties in to all of their learning objectives, whilst enjoying our 55 fantastic rides and attractions, including the new LEGO Ninjago World and LEGO Ninjago the Ride.
The Resort is best suited to pupils from KS1 to KS4, though we’re also able to offer experiences for pre-school and younger school pupils, particularly in our DUPLO Valley area. Here, children can enjoy Brickville – a space where the landscape is designed for exploring and imaginative play.
Students visiting the park can also partake in one of our 12 curriculum focused workshops, where hands-on learning is key! All of the workshops are led by LEGOLAND’s knowledgeable (and fun) education team, who receive training and support from LEGO Education. This means that our workshops are finely tuned to complement the National Curriculum, with a LEGO twist. Over the course of the workshops, pupils can learn about STEM, English, art, geography and even history.
We also provide a range of school resources via our website to help teachers prepare for their trip, including downloadable permission slips for sending home to parents and a risk assessment form. Teachers can also access information regarding recommended teacher-to-student ratios and ride height and age restrictions to assist in the pre-planning ahead of the day.
Further details and booking information can be found at LEGOLAND.co.uk/education. For advice and enquiries, contact the LEGOLAND Windsor Resort education team on 01753 626 236 or email [email protected]