We teach students about the importance and benefits of healthy habits as part of our Personal, Social, Health and Economic syllabus, and promote physical activity, a balanced diet and self-care activities throughout the curriculum and school life.
At Ark Atwood Primary Academy we value the importance of meal times. We are committed to provide a healthy and nutritious meal for every child alongside the experience of eating meals in a small group alongside adults. We have an onsite kitchen where all our meals are cooked fresh each day.
Pupils learn table manners, how to hold cutlery properly, how to lay a table and have opportunity to experience discussion and dialogue over dinner with support from staff. We place great importance on all our pupils learning these important social skills and therefore this is a part of the school day which is planned for and shared with teachers and other adults.
We also run a breakfast club where children can get involved in a range of activities and receive a nutritionally balanced meal.
We promote positive mental health for every student and member of staff, and have both a universal whole-school approach to mental health, together with specialised, targeted approaches for vulnerable students.
We also collaborate with children's mental health charity Place2Be. Place2Be is there to help children find ways to cope with difficult feelings or situations, so their worries don't get in the way of their friendships, their learning or how they feel about themselves. Place2Be's professionals work with individuals one-to-one or in small groups, giving regular support for pupils who need it. Place2Be always gets agreement from parents or carers before they support an individual through one-to-one counselling, and meet with parents or carers regularly to keep them updated.
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The aim of the fitness programme is to ensure that pupils receive regular exercise activity. Lessons are designed to raise the heart rate and improve overall fitness, stamina and flexibility. Units across the year and across the school develop the following:
- Flexibility exercise. Children become more agile when they are able to stretch and move their bodies in a full range of motion. Encouraging children to begin stretching in childhood can help them maintain limber physiques throughout life.
- Strength and stamina. Strength exercises can help children build healthy muscles. With an appropriately organised programme, children can advance their strength and stamina. Due to the age of pupils and risk of injury during growth spurts no weights will be used during strength classes; most workouts will focus on non-resistance training and developing stamina.
- Aerobic exercise. Cardiovascular training is an important component of children’s fitness, keeping their heart and lungs strong.
- Circuit training. Children can apply their strength and stamina, and develop greater levels of fitness through circuit training. Circuit training combines aerobic exercise, strength, stamina and flexibility.