School trip ideas with with a World Book Day twist.
With World Book Day approaching, we have been thinking about school trip itineraries with a difference. We know demands on teachers are increasing; therefore, the more leisure and tourism and heritage venues can support them when planning their school visits, the more likely they are to book.
There are many authors, tales and stories originating all over Great Britain that will inspire young people to engage with storytelling and stimulate their imaginations. Many of these stories, and the wonderful authors who wrote them, are celebrated all year round; however, there is no better time than World Book Day to start hunting for inspiration for your next educational visit.
Click on the links below to access our itineraries.
AA Milne – East Sussex
Beatrix Potter – Lake District
JK Rowling and Harry Potter – Edinburgh
C S Lewis in Northern Ireland
Michael Morpurgo and Dartmoor
Robin Hood – Sherwood Forest
J.R.R. Tolkien and Birmingham
For more information about World Book Day go to www.worldbookday.com
If you require any help creating itineraries for your setting, marketing to schools or improving your education offer, please contact us at email@example.com; we would love to hear from you.
Writing Can Be Fun!
How to Support Reluctant Writers
If you work with, or offer trips to children, you will come across reluctant writers at some point in your career. Those pupils who do not respond well to the traditional worksheet and pencil. These children may have special educational needs or simply be a child who ‘freezes’ when asked to write. They can be P&P-phobes – (pencil and paper-phobes.)
We know that new and engaging interpretation methods are the way to capture young minds; however, there are many ways you can adapt your education offer to still allow pupils to develop their English skills through answering questions, jotting thoughts or simply offering an opportunity to ‘make’ letters. You could look at some of the ways that educational professionals are encouraging pupil knowledge of letter formation and writing skills without a trace of the pen/pencil and paper (P&P) combination.
We have listed 10 simple and in-expensive methods you can use.
Not all of the following ideas are practical in every situation – but can you use any to help just one child?
10 Ways to Encourage Writing Without Using P&P
- Gel boards – special gel filled plastic wallets that children love to write on. It is different and it can be any colour.
- Writing in playdough – for some special needs children this works really well. They love to write their answers for others to read and then scrunch up the playdough, ready to start again.
- Writing in slime or mud – it is messy, easy to rub out and slightly unusual.
Breaking the Rules
- Windows, glass and mirrors – we have witnessed very reluctant writers creating wonderful outdoor poetry using this method. There is a time and a place…and your setting might just be it!
- Tables – yes, we said tables! We know this goes against etiquette but there is nothing like ‘breaking the rules’ to get pupils on board.
- Using unusual objects to write with– such as carrots, feathers, and other items linked to your attraction.
Big, Messy or Hands-On
- Giant paint brushes or writing utensils and giant walls of paper, chalkboard or another large surface.
- Sandboxes – simple boxes or trays with sand in that pupils can write using fingers or another object.
- Making letters using objects – this can be string, paper straws – anything you can bend and make different sizes.
What About Not Writing At All?
- Why not provide those with additional needs the opportunity to record their answers or listen to the worksheets through digital devices such as, simple MP3 recorders. Pupils can record their answers and play back. This helps them to develop writing skills such as word organisation, sentence structure and grammar.
Pupils respond really well to anything different, fun and slightly naughty!
If you would like more information about supporting the needs of schools at your setting, please contact us on:
firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 07846281171
This month, International Day of Persons with Disabilities was celebrated around the world. We have used this day to support clients in gaining a better understanding of the needs of people affected by a disability.
More than 1 in 6 people have an activity limiting health problem or disability in England and Wales. Yet over £3 billion pounds is spent each year in England alone by British and international visitors from this market. If you are not thinking about inclusivity, you should be!
Not only should it be part of your overall equality and diversity ethos, but at a time when sustainability in leisure and tourism is on everyone’s mind, it make sense to do everything to open up your attraction to as many markets as possible.
One thing we need to remember is: people with disabilities have the same range of preferences, perceptions, attitudes, habits and needs that drive consumer behaviour of people without disabilities.
We have put together 10 tips to help your business provide access for all.
- Communication is very important in making disabled people feel welcome. Be natural – smile and chat to your disabled customers just as you would with any other, and don’t push all communication through their family or carer.
- Make sure you give people the opportunity to let you know about any special requirements they may have. For example, include the line “Please let me know if you have any special requirements” as a standard sentence in telephone etiquette and letters.
- Recognise the diversity of the disability market. Understand that all disabilities are different and affect each individual differently. Do not assume that one size fits all. Keep an open mind about what persons with disabilities can or cannot do.
- Make sure all of your staff are comfortable and confident serving disabled people and can offer assistance without actually imposing it.
- Offer training to staff to develop an understanding of inclusivity and enhance their work practices.
- Promote the inclusivity of your business/attraction. Make sure access information is included on your website.
- Test your marketing approach and products with people who have disabilities. Develop promotional strategies that target disabled individuals and their family members.
- Direct mail is a very effective way to reach many. Braille or large type pieces would be effective targeting the blind or vision impaired. Include direct marketing via newsletters from national organizations, local newspapers, magazines and the internet.
- Avoid leaving clutter lying around, and make sure your setting access areas are wide enough for all types of mobility vehicles. Regular seating is important too.
- Work with what you have. Develop simple physical modifications to make existing services and products accessible.
For more information and support have a look at the following websites:
www.visitbritain.org/providing-access-all Accessibility Guides. A national scheme. Dedicated courses. A host of tips and advice to help you cater for visitors with accessibility requirements, a market worth £12 billion.’
www.tourismforall.org.uk Packed full of useful information including: training, access audit, destination advice audit, events and seminars
https://www.livingoptions.org/support-help/heritage-ability Heritage Ability is a project designed to support heritage sites to become more accessible. It is delivered by Living Options Devon and operates across the South-West.
If you need any help making your setting more accessible to all, do not hesitate to contact our Inclusivity Consultant Addy at email@example.com .
Exciting Education’s Dartmoor Ambassador
We are excited to announce our MD, Rebecca, as the Visit Dartmoor Ambassador for 2017. The following article is available on the Visit Dartmoor website at https://www.visitdartmoor.co.uk/visitor-info/visit-dartmoor-ambassadors. Although we have worked with Visit Dartmoor on their holiday calendars for families, Rebecca will now be working closely with the team to promote Dartmoor and share its wonders with you!
‘Our Visit Dartmoor Ambassador Rebecca Martin is an educational consultant and writer with an expert eye!
Rebecca is a consultant and writer who offers the ‘expert eye’ for businesses, companies and charities wanting to attract young customers and families. From creating educational activities, trails and workshops for tourist attractions that will inspire and enthrall children, to making hotels and restaurants more family friendly; With a wealth of experience in education and tourism, she knows how to create ‘the place to visit’ for children and families.
“I am so proud to be an Ambassador for Visit Dartmoor. To work with such a passionate team to promote Dartmoor is a dream come true.” Having grown up on Dartmoor with the ‘moor’ being her playground, Rebecca has a passion to help families utilise the amazing resource that is right on our doorstep. She has been working with Visit Dartmoor to create holiday calendars to encourage families to enjoy everything Dartmoor has to offer. Rebecca also writes fun Dahl-esk poetry and fiction to encourage children to fall in love with Dartmoor as she did as a child. These have been turned into workshops that are taken into schools, along with the other educational days her freelance consultants conduct.
She writes about parenting and education for a variety of magazines, including the local Tavy and Moor Links Magazines. “My aim is to encourage parents and teachers to get outside and into their locality – including Dartmoor- with children through my writing and regular ‘What’s On’ guides.’
In the Office
Her consultancy clients include local authorities and governments offices, magazines and a variety of tourism businesses. Rebecca uses her wealth of experience gained from years as a teacher, consultant and Ofsted Inspector to gently guide her clientele; helping them see themselves through the eyes of a child. She supports them in understanding how to market to their target audience, how to make important changes that improve their provision for families and most importantly, how to gain more custom.’
If you want to contact us about our consultancy, writing or find out more about what we do, please e-mail us on firstname.lastname@example.org; follow us on Twitter @excitinged or find us on Facebook www.facebook.com/ExcitingEducation/
Wondering what to do this half term on Dartmoor? We have collaborated with the official tourism board for Dartmoor (Visit Dartmoor) to create the ‘Half Term Inspiration’ to help you plan your holiday – what ever the weather.
A week’s calendar full of events and attractions in the local area with a twist! We have created a week for each weather type so whether it is rain or shine, you have something to do.
These events are mostly outside so best enjoyed in nicer weather. But, if you are a hardy family who goes outside with your waterproofs and wellies with people looking on like you are mad then go ahead and try these in all weathers.
Dry with Occasional Showers
These places are perfect for dry days but have exciting things to keep your kiddies entertained inside and out. Perfect for those days when the weather can not decide what to do!
Perfect if the weather is not being kind to us and the rain continues to pour all day! Of course these activities are suitable for your Dry and Dry With Occasional Shower days too.
So enjoy your week and we hope that you will join us in reviewing some of the places on our calendar. What out for our review sheet coming on Friday!
Christopher Columbus Poem Full of Facts and Fun!
As you all know, we like to share snippets of historical facts here at Exciting Education so we have written a little poem about the history of Christopher Columbus’ ‘Voyage of Discovery’ which wasn’t quite the historical genius we are led to believe! On 3rd August 1492, Christopher Columbus set off on his first voyage that started the Spanish reign in the West Indies and America.
Chris Columbus he’s our man,
If anyone can find it, he can,
this Italian with a dad in wool,
ended up finding land that was rather cool,
this map seller obsessed with being rich,
his lack of fortune he tried to switch,
1492, he set sail with his ships in threes,
Clara, Nina, Maria – made from trees,
paid for by Ferd and Is from Spain,
who hoped for spice routes which they could reign,
looking for China and the rest of Asia too,
he spotted something unexpected and rather new,
little did he know the Vikings had been there,
but it wasn’t common knowledge to be fair,
He found the West Indies and their native tribes,
which Christo charmed with his present bribes,
the lands were claimed for Spain alone,
and Columbus took captive inhabitants from their home,
he set sail minus forty men,
whizzed to the monarchs before returning again,
all the men had sadly died,
but Christopher he did not cry,
he had found more land yet,
and riches for his troubles did he get,
his fourth and final voyage in 1502,
proved a little more than he could do,
stranded for a year on American soil,
he returned to Spain sick and temperature at boil,
In 1506, he finally passed away,
but we remember him to this day,
he went down in history,
as the superstar in discovery.