Sadly, many children in primary schools in the UK have a sole diet of English and Mathematics. The narrowing of the curriculum means that in many schools, PE – like the arts – is shunted to one side.
Research shows that children who are physically fit are better at absorbing and retaining new information. Physically Active Learning (PAL) approaches not only provide an enjoyable alternative to “traditional” learning but promote physical activity – crucial when we all face the increasing problem of sedentary lifestyles.
With this in mind, Bryn Llewellyn created Tagtiv8 Active Learning Games. Bryn is a former teacher and school leader from Bradford. His mission is to support schools with training, resources and ideas so that teachers feel confident in delivering in English and Maths via physical activity. Think Tag Rugby meets Scrabble and Countdown and you get an idea of how the games work.
There are now 170 schools across the UK and abroad using the Tagtiv8 programme, including a few in Wharfedale. The impact can be seen on the faces of the children as they play the games. Their feedback is priceless. According to Bella, a Y5 child in Leeds, “With Tagtiv8 Maths, you don’t get a chance to be bored…you don’t tune out.” Joe from Rawdon St Peter’s School is one of many children who benefit from learning outside, “I love Tagtiv8 because it gets my brain active.”
Bryn felt that the smiles and anecdotes were great, but he needed to prove to Head Teachers that the PAL approaches impact on standards. With this in mind, he was introduced to Andy Daly-Smith, a senior lecturer at Leeds Beckett University. The initial findings were positive:
● Tagtiv8 sessions increase MVPA by up to 10 minutes and decrease sitting downtime by up to 16 minutes.
● Children achieve ⅓ of their daily MVPA target, as outlined in the ‘Childhood Obesity Plan of Action’.
● Tagtiv8 can improve academic performance when compared to seated classroom lessons.
● Minimal gains in each session add up to substantial gains over a period of time.
● Tagtiv8 sessions impact positively on learning in subsequent lessons.
To find out more about the research, click here. Bryn was really pleased that the mainstream media were keen to pick up on the findings and share these across the country. For the ITN Calendar News feature, click here.
That said, according to Kim Sutton, a teacher in Australia, “It’s great to support what you are doing with research, but I honestly think the proof is with the kids! They love it.”
Bryn is keen to put Yorkshire on the map for employment as well as health and education. With this in mind, rather than importing the resources from abroad, the Tagtiv8 resources are manufactured in this region. “We chose E4 Printing as a partner because they have a similar ethos to us. E4 are based in Bradford and are part of the national charity Hft, a charity that employs people with learning difficulties. Working with Hft means we can now offer opportunities for training and employment. When I visit the team at Hft, I can see that their self-esteem is boosted.”
If you would like more information about Tagtiv8 and how they could work and play with your school, reach out via:
Office: 020 3370 4272
Mobile: 07506 523354
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