We took a visit to Bluebell Primary School to take a look at their Change4Life Club. Mr D’Rosario has been running the club throughout this school year after successfully implementing it into the school last year.
Change4Life Clubs are part of the national Change4Life Programme and aim to encourage pupils who are traditionally less active to engage in physical activity and sports, understand the benefits of being active and encourage life-long participation. It also aims to get the pupils thinking and taking responsibility for their own wellbeing.
Each of the pupils who attends the club have been invited by the school. As traditionally they are least active, all the pupils that attend are SEND pupils. This also gives these pupils the opportunity to receive the benefits of being active in a non-competitive environment and to learn and try something new.
The pupils have had the opportunity to try and wide range of activities and games. These include those in the Change4Life activity card packs that focus on specific themes. To encourage continued participation and engagement Mr D’Rosario also gives the pupils the opportunity to choose the activities that they would like to do. As a result, they have also had the opportunity to try alternative activities such as Yoga.
This term, Bluebell Primary School have taken a different approach to their Change4Life Club and are taking their pupils across the Dell Rose Court Care Home where they participate in activities alongside the residents.
Each week as one group, they participate in a mixture of activities. This week they all started with a game of Frisbee followed by a game of New Age Bowls and New Age Kurling. Not only do the activities offer the children a chance to be see that physical activity doesn’t always have to be competitive sport but it also provides a social opportunity to interact with the community and learn something new. At the end of the session, the pupils also get the opportunity to have some squash and snacks alongside the residents. Here they are given a topic each week to talk and discuss between themselves. This has involved the residents sharing stories as to their favourite sport and activities when they were pupils at school and makes for an interesting discussion point.
After speaking to some of the pupils who attend, it is clear that the Change4Life Club has had a positive impact on their lifestyle. Sam commented on how it has given him the opportunity to meet new people, including new pupils at his school who is would not otherwise engage with. He talked about how he likes target style activities and how he first had the opportunity to play these games at the Club. He also commented on how he likes sport more now and would like to play other target-based sports such as basketball.
Artimis also loves getting to talk and share stories with the residents, because she always learns something new about sport and which sports are popular with others. Her favourite activities and the Boccia and the Frisbee. Now, she has a Frisbee at home and plays with this alongside her brother in the park, and will also participate in football too.
At the end of each of the session, each of the pupils is also given a sticker. This sticker represents the Spirit of the Games Value that they demonstrated in the session. These include honesty, passion, self-belief, teamwork, determination and respect. They can then add this to their Change4Life Log books where they also document how and when they have been getting active
Mr D’Rosario commented;
“We have been running the Change4Life Club now for a while at Bluebell and it has been great to see the kids having fun and enjoying themselves. We take them to the Change4Life Festivals which is great to get them interested in the clubs and also gets them working with kids from other schools. Having the ability to go across to Dell Rose Court has really had an impact too. The kids love talking to and getting to join in with the residents. I think it shows them that being active doesn’t have to be hard work and it’s something important to everyone that you can do for the rest of your life. I also know that some of them are now doing other activities outside of school to which is great and exactly what we want from them”.
To find out more about Change4Life Clubs and how to get your school involved, visit the Change4Life page on our website.