Thanks to generous support from the Austin and Hope Pilkington Trust, TCV at Skelton Grange Environment Centre are able to offer Leeds schools a half term of Green Gym activities. Already well known for improving health and wellbeing for adults, Skelton Grange is keen to extend these benefits to young people in Leeds.
Our school Green Gyms are fun outdoor sessions where children are guided in practical activities such as den building and active nature games, as well as opportunities to work as a team and build confidence and resilience. As well as increasing physical activity, Green Gyms also enhance mental wellbeing through increased contact with nature, and the social benefits of group activity.
Children who took part in our pilot programme earlier this year said the programme helped with their confidence, friendships, life outside school and concentrating at school. The school reported positive observations in terms of behaviour and wellbeing amongst the children who attended.
From what I’ve observed I think they definitely have become more resilient. Most of the children have difficult home lives or suffer a little from low esteem or anxiety and I think the sessions have definitely helped with that. Their class teachers have said they really looked forward to the sessions each week and having that to focus on helped them cope with the day to day stresses that they faced at school or home and be a little more relaxed about things. I think most of them really felt like they were part of a team and had the confidence to try out their own ideas. It will be lovely to see if that confidence continues in school.
If you are interested in bringing a group of up to 10 children, for a morning or afternoon each week for a half term, to Skelton Grange’s school Green Gym sessions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Colin Green on 0113 2430815.