The Literacy Company and Teach Active team up!
Teach Active is an online resource that provides schools and teachers with lessons plans and resources on how to teach the curriculum for maths and English through physical activity.
Founded in 2014, the multi-award winning and government praised website is used in schools across the UK and internationally.
Teach Active (originally being a maths resource) joined forces with The Literacy Company in 2019 to add Active English plans to their site. This is a partnership that continues to grow and flourish and now, thanks to the partnership, hundreds of thousands of children each week are taking part in reading and writing activities linked to physical activity.
So what are the benefits and why should you consider this approach for your pupils?
1) Increased levels of physical activity
We often read so many negative articles about obesity levels and overweight children and of course this is a huge reason why schools are being asked to get children more active. We can’t ignore obesity levels, sedentary behaviour and the alarming facts linking lack of physical activity to health problems in later life. As teachers we will never tell children they must exercise because they are overweight or obese instead we love to focus on all the positives that come from physical activity.
If you are a teacher reading this, ask your class what the benefits of physical activity are. I wonder how many of the positives they will list. Do your children know that physical activity, as well as helping them to ‘stay fit and healthy’, will also help their memory, concentration and focus? Do they know it will help them to be more productive in the school day? Sleep better? Have more energy?
Which other subjects can we say all of this about?
Schools do a marvelous job and teachers often tell us what they are doing in their school to get children active. We love to hear of all the ideas and strategies taking place and added to the curriculum.
But sometimes we perhaps need to look away from ‘what more can we do?’ and foster instead an attitude of ‘how can we do what we are doing differently?’
This is where our passion for ‘active learning’ comes in. Why stop a sedentary lesson for 5 minutes of wake up and shake when there is an opportunity to make the lesson more active in the first place?
Rather than have a sedentary maths and English lesson with a break to dance behind our chairs, why not just incorporate activity into that lesson? This movement will have purpose, this movement will be fun and engaging, this movement will support learning – and most importantly this movement is sustainable.
2) Attitudes – Children will love it!
Teachers work tirelessly to plan fun and engaging lessons for their pupils. They want to see children enjoying learning and done correctly children are more likely to remember the learning experience and retain the information taught. Introducing active maths/English lessons will certainly engage your children as these schools have found out...
“Teach Active has helped us to reach the ultimate goal. Lessons are engaging, active and diverse … students love them!”
Joel Beeden, Duckmanton Primary School
“Not only will it impact on your data, your standards, your outcomes – but you will also see a renewed vigour, enthusiasm and enjoyment across both pupils and staff”
Nicola Booth, Headteacher, Gwladys Street Primary School
Does active learning mean we lose focus of our lesson outcomes and objectives? Absolutely not! Teachers know what works for their class and children and they can simply link that knowledge and expertise into this way of teaching and learning.
Schools we have worked with across the UK feedback the impact this has had. We have completed test and learn studies with whole schools, intervention groups, transition, early years, boys/girls, SEN and are seeing more than ever the impact that active learning is having on children.
“Its fabulous to see so many smiling faces and increase in achievement in the subject”
Steve Tindall, Headteacher, Holy Family Catholic School
“100% of teachers said they had seen a positive impact on children’s learning”
Nigel Mosaid, St Oswald’s Primary School
In summary then, incorporating physical activity in to maths and English lessons will ensure your school day is more active and as a result your children are more active. Importantly, it will also be welcomed and enjoyed by children and even help them to achieve. Why wouldn’t we do it?
Are you a Primary School? Secondary School?
Visit www.teachactive.org and try their free plans with your pupils