Disclaimer: I have been paid to write this post, and not to play in the Premier League as I originally thought (their loss). Everything that I have said in this post is entirely my own opinion.
When you think of the Premier League what do you think of? Be honest. OK, I’ll go first just in case you’re feeling shy – I think of footballers being in newspaper columns (and not just the sports section); huge amounts of money; and large groups of people chanting things about a game I don’t really understand. But that’s just me – obviously what I do understand is that a huge amount of people take a passionate and vested interest in football.
However, as parents, something that we should all be passionate about is education. As someone who trained to be a primary school teacher with a view to combing my psychology degree with my passion for young people I am particularly interested in getting children interested. And what better way to engage children’s interest in learning than by using a competition and people that they recognise and admire? And sport does not have to just mean PE lessons; during football games we can exercise children’s mathematical skills (counting goals and using mathematical language) their English language skills (writing match reports) and their PSHE skills (working together as a team).
When children are not interested they do not learn. I have been in situations before where I have been supporting young people with Special Education Needs (SEN) and I have been instructed to relay the same information but slightly louder. Let me tell you something right now, repeating the same information but louder does not help it sink in. I said REPEATING THE SAME INFORMATION BUT LOUDER DOES NOT HELP IT SINK IN.
In my experience when children are not achieving and are not jumping through the proverbial hoops that we lay out for them in childhood then instead of just laying out some more hoops we have to help them access them in a different way – and (this is not something that I ever thought I’d say) this is where the Premier League comes in.
The Premier League have created online teaching resources, both to pique children’s interest and also to inspire teachers to use different ways to teach the usual subjects. Basically a plethora of resources to ensure that people don’t need to employ the repeating the lesson LOUDER strategy.
All of the resources are completely free and include PE, Maths, English and PSHE lesson plans and certificates and stickers. I have cast my eyes over all the material available and it is all very usable and comprehensive – the content is diverse and covers many areas. As an example there is an hour long session on inclusion for KS2 which contains learning outcomes, a short film, starter activities, main activities and a word bank. All in all an incredibly important lesson, because let’s face it, in the current political climate who doesn’t want their child to learn how to identify ways to challenge and change attitudes towards prejudice and discrimination?
You can watch Dylan’s story which tells you far more about what the Premier league are doing than I can, here:
The Premier League Primary Stars scheme are also launching a poetry competition based on the theme of resilience. I like the idea of this competition SO much that I went into my children’s school to speak to the deputy head and see if we can get our school involved. I almost don’t want to tell you about it because the more people who enter, the less our chances are of winning but in the name of fairness (and because I’ve been asked to) the details can be found here.
“Premier League Primary Stars has already proved to be a success thanks to the great work our clubs are carrying out in their communities and the breadth of resources the programme makes available to primary school teachers. We have already achieved our initial target of engaging 10,000 schools and the programme keeps evolving. Premier League Writing Stars is backed by established authors and poets as well as footballers and our aim is to enthuse children, teachers and parents alike.”
Richard Scudamore, Premier League Executive Chairman.
The competition ends on the 22nd of December. Good luck! (ish)