St. Francis De Sales Catholic Junior School was awarded the Liverpool Healthy Schools Award. This means that we aim to improve health, raise pupil achievement, improve social inclusion and support our pupil's to adopt healthy, safe and responsible behaviours.
The criteria for the award is applied across the whole school. From providing a positive culture and environment to planning learning activities, as well as residential trips, the Liverpool Healthy Schools Award is embedded across our school.
Healthy Schools is prominent in other areas of the curriculum; PE lessons are taught regularly as well as extra curricular sessions that are accessible to all of our pupils. Healthy cooking is offered as part of our DT curriculum and equips pupils with essential skills while re-enforcing the message about healthy eating. Pupils look at the effects of drugs and alcohol through our 'Healthy Me topic. And Computing teaches the children how to keep themselves safe online.
We also welcome many outside agencies to come and deliver sessions with their expertise. These include; British Military School; Bikeability; NSPCC etc.
Each year group undertakes a DT topic that introduces them to healthy eating. They look at the benefits of fresh ingredients and the vitamins they provide their bodies, as well as acquiring new skills such as: making dough and pastry, slicing vegetables, cooking pasta and rolling a tortilla wrap. The children really look forward to this topic and many have made these recipes at home!
We are lucky to employ specialist PE staff to plan and deliver lessons to the children. All pupils receive at least 2 hours of taught physical education each week. This consists of 1 1/2 hours of class PE, taught over 2 sessions, and a weekly half hour year group session.
The curriculum was designed to hit all the strands of the national curriculum whilst building upon the skills learnt year by year in each unit. The subject leader has linked in with a number of outside agencies including Liverpool School Sports Partnerships, Liverpool and Everton Football Clubs, MSB Dance and School Improvement Liverpool.
Each year, Year 5 enjoy an exciting trip to Delamere Forest. They visit the beautiful Delamere Forest to experience mountain biking and bush skills. During the bush skills, They learn how to survive in the forest by making shelters. They learn to use materials at their disposal to create a shelter that could keep them safe from the elements. Team work was very important during this task, as they need to work together to find what they need in order to build a successful shelter.
The mountain biking however, is the main attraction during this wonderful trip. They work on their cycling skills and explore the stunning forest as they follow the trial. The more confident riders even manage a bit of off road cycling!
Improving our pupils' mental health is huge part of our vision and values as a school. We encourage all children to articulate their feelings and support them with strategies to understand and manage their emotions. Mental Health awareness week is a great time to reiterate this to all of our pupils and encourage them to understand that mental health issues are actually very common, especially amoung young people today. As a school, we have adopted the ROAR response, a Liverpool CAMHS initiative. Multiple staff members have received ROAR training and the children are aware of the ROAR vocabulary and strategies.
"I am resilient like Ralph because I struggled with writing my emotion poem but I didn't give up and my teacher was very proud!" - Ryan S, Year 5
At St.Francis De Sales we believe that the children should be educated about all of the different issues that await them in the world. Through an understanding of what 'drugs and alcohol' are and the effects that they have upon a person's body, and lifestyle, we are enabling the children to make informed and positive choices. Now that we also have the Jigsaw curriculum, we have combined 'Drugs and Alcohol' awareness week and out topic 'Healthy Me'.
Tuesday 11th February was Safer Internet Day and the theme this year was 'Free to be'. So as part of this, we learned about why it's important to have an internet where you are free to be yourself and a place where everyone is equal. The children watched videos and took part in activities to understand the importance of their 'online identity' and keeping it safe. We also had a quiz on the children's understanding of the school's SMART rules.
After this, the children were tasked with creating a poster to show, 'What a better internet looks to me'. They had to create an annotated poster that showed what changes they would do and why. They then got up in front of their classmates and presented their ideas.
NSPCC visited year 5 to talk about healthy relationships. They explained that we all have the right to be safe and it is NEVER okay for someone to make us feel unsafe, whether we know them or not. They explored different senarios with the children and thought about how they might feel in that situation. After that, they spoke about the importance of having a trusted adult that you can tell if you feel unsafe and they can help you. They also helped them to remember the number for Childline should they ever feel like they need someone to talk to.