Respecting Our Rights in Manchester

What a week! An earlier than expected opportunity to work and play outside in glorious sunshine. On Monday we were in Leicester – watch this space. Then on Wednesday, thanks to the generosity of the Royal Institution, we were given the opportunity to share some Move & Learn activities with an amazing Right Respecting School in Manchester.

Rights Respecting Schools

The welcome at St Matthew’s CE Primary School matched the weather. What struck us immediately was the school’s commitment to Children’s Rights and their award as a Rights Respecting School. Everything in the school is based on the 54 Articles. Could this be a Manchester thing? We still remember our time listening to Graham Andre at last year’s Primary Rocks Live.

The Daily Mile

We were particularly impressed by their newly installed ‘running track’. It is obvious that there are many schools in Trafford embracing The Daily Mile – thanks in part to the backing of Andy Burnham. What makes this track different is its intriguing name – Trail 24. Deputy Head, Pete Langbridge explained: “It was all our children’s idea. The name relates to Article 24 – ‘’You have the right to the best health care possible, safe water to drink, nutritious food, a clean and safe environment, and information to help you stay well’.”

As to the Tagtiv8 Maths Day, we were smiling throughout. The children – from Nursery to Year 6 – all embraced the concept of Physically Active Learning. The staff were equally impressed. Many of them commented on the engagement of the children – even those who are sometimes reluctant. One teacher commented on the fact that a boy in her class was given the opportunity to shine in a subject in which he sometimes struggles. This was pretty fitting when you consider the school’s mantra, ‘Let Your Light Shine’.

Creativity and New ideas

We have to BIG UP the staff for their energy and enthusiasm during the CPD element. Not only did we look at simple ways to make Mathematics more active, relevant and fun, but we also discussed ways to make the Daily Mile more sustainable.

Not only that, but the children in Year 6 were able to play with some ideas – created by a lead Mathematics teacher from Birmingham. Step forward Gary Setchell from Bournville Junior School. They took Gary’s suggestions further in terms of matching fractions, decimals and percentages. And yes – they did realise their initial error. But hey, we learn from our mistakes!

Active Fractions - Equivalent Creative Percentages

The M62 is always a struggle and Wednesday was no different. That said, the extra time gave us longer to reflect on an another amazing day with another awesome school. If any schools in Manchester would like to move and learn with us, just drop us a line.