The power of a little ‘thank you’

Young boy interviewed about history

At the end of the summer term, I received an email. The email was a ‘thank you’, addressed to all the organisations that had helped to enhance the curriculum for pupils at Asquith and Berry Hill Primary Schools in Nottinghamshire. It was a lovely email to receive:

We wanted to try to let you know how much we appreciate your time and expertise and your willingness to pass it on to our pupils…

We are currently working with the schools on Century of Change, part of the NLHF Landscape Heritage project, Miner2Major, set in and around Sherwood Forest. Although we haven’t been able to deliver a Century of Change week as planned yet, the children from the schools helped us by sharing their views on local history. This video is a valuable resource for anyone wanting an insight into how to engage children with local history. 

The ‘thank you’ email is evidence of the myriad ways schools work with external agencies and how important this work is. The schools’ Extended Services Coordinator provided a bulleted list of 30 ways external organisations had provided support. Each item on the bulleted list started with a variation on:

  • Generated opportunities for…
  • Supported our children…
  • Opened our children’s eyes to… 
  • Helped to deliver…
  • Provided resources… 
  • Invited our children to…

Organisations I work with often ask how they can ‘deliver the National Curriculum’. The short answer is, they can’t. What they can do is provide opportunities to enrich the curriculum, to:

  • Inspire children
  • Engage and challenge them
  • Support them to learn in a different setting. 

For me the magic is seeing children shine, particularly those who may not always shine in a classroom setting. 

So instead of asking ‘How can my organisation deliver the National Curriculum’, perhaps focus on ‘How can my organisation uniquely support children to learn?’

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