At Birchwood we have two ways that children get to experience B.A.S.E. (Birchwood Additional School Experiences) activities.
1) B.A.S.E. Afterschool Experiences – All children within school have the opportunity to attend a wide variety of Birchwood Additional School Experiences afterschool clubs. These include activities such as; football, netball, dodgeball, painting, choir, science club, set design, dance, puppetry and keyboard club just to name a few. These run for a half term and are delivered either by our teachers and teaching assistants in school or by external visitors.
2) B.A.S.E. Skills Academy - At Birchwood we are very keen to celebrate children who are brilliantly behaved, considerate and respectful all of the time. To reward them for being at their Birchwood Best, the children get to choose and take part in ‘Skills Academy’ to support our BASE (Birchwood Additional School Experience) programme. If children follow the one school rule of Consideration and Respect and try their best all week in their learning, they will earn thirty minutes of BASE skills academy time. During BASE Skills time, children have the opportunity to take part in a wide range of enjoyable skills-based activities of their choice. These are facilitated by Birchwood teachers and teaching assistants. Skills Academy takes place in phases. Children choose from a range of different skills activities in each phase including Lego, football, music, art, dance, cooking and many more. They will spend the half term practicing and refining these skills during their BASE time. Each half term there will be a new set of skills activities for the children to choose.
We aim to give all of our children here at Birchwood ‘rich opportunities and memorable experiences’. B.A.S.E. allows us to create many more opportunities to do this outside of our ‘normal’ classroom environment. We are able to deliver such high-quality expertise as the teachers, teaching assistants and our visitors in want to share the love of their skill to our children and pass on their knowledge. This love for learning that is being passed down from our staff enables rich, stimulating and accessible opportunities which ensure all children can develop as enthusiastic and independent learners. Within all our B.A.S.E. activities, be it afterschool or during skills academy, we aim to build children's self-discipline, a sense of pride, consideration and respect for themselves, their peers, their learning and for their school and wider community. As all B.A.S.E. activities run for half a term or longer we are able to help children build upon; Prior knowledge that they might already have; Be able to ask lots of questions to support connections between new materials and prior learning retrieval practice; Be able to build connections to deepen understanding; Be able to make logical progression through sequences of new knowledge and skills to ultimately reach a defined end point.
Some skills/activities include:
Craft, Bookmarks, Board Games, Kapla, Outdoor games/activities, Gardening, Invasion games, Collaborative colouring, Yoga, Dancing, Nature Sketching, Mindful colouring, Puzzles, Team challenges/games, Cricket, Royal Family, Drawing – Outdoor observation, Football, Rounders, Cooking, French, Singing, Board Games, Scavenger hunts, Workouts, Paper airplanes, Quiz Club, Lego, Story writing, Basketball, Cricket, Reading, Bug Hunting, Story Time, Animation, Bucket Drumming, Netball, Coding, Bracelet Making.
Through B.A.S.E activities children will; experience 'rich opportunities and memorable experiences'; be highly literate, numerate and articulate; build self-discipline, and a sense of pride, consideration and respect for themselves and others; be highly adaptable to change and equipped for life in a highly sophisticated and technological society.
The successful implementation of B.A.S.E. allows the children to grow in confidence as a result of the freedom, time and space they are given in their learning. This allows them to demonstrate independence at each individual child’s rate. Activities such as sharing and participating in skills and play, help teach the children to work together as a group, which strengthens their bonds and social skills. Working within team experiences provided within B.A.S.E. helps prompt language development. Improving communication skills has a positive effect on a child’s self-esteem and is a crucial part of their development.
High levels of interest lead to high levels of attention. Our different activities tend to fascinate them which develops a strong will to participate and concentrate over long periods of time. Not only does the development of physical stamina improve in such activities as football or netball but also gross and fine motor skills in activities such as drawing, bracelet making etc.
When children really engage with our B.A.S.E. activities we hope they will take their experiences home to share with friends and family. We hope in turn that this infectious learning will then carry on at home where our children can work and play alongside their families creating even more long-lasting memories and experiences.