We value learning whenever and wherever it happens, and we acknowledge that sometimes the best learning happens outside the classroom. At Laddingford, part of building future aspiration is exposing children to experiences and opportunities which broaden their horizons. Below are some examples of enrichment opportunities we have provided in recent years.
National Gallery - Take One Picture
We took part in the Take One Picture project at the national gallery. This project provided an opportunity for high quality training for all staff, improving the quality of art teaching long term. It also provided children with an opportunity to visit the National Gallery, an inspirational trip which fed into their learning back at school. Some of the work produced by children following this visit, was then selected to be exhibited in the National Gallery. This project will be repeated in the future
Ballet and Theatre
Each year we plan a cultural experience for children these have included; attending a ballet at the Royal Opera House and attending west end shows including The Lion King and School of Rock. For some of our children, attending the Royal Opera house may be a once in a lifetime experience, but we hope that is an experience that will teach them that they are as welcome in that environment as anyone else.
Young Voices at the o2
We take part in the Young Voices concert at the o2 annually, when we first attended we took 6 children, in 2022 we took 28; over a third of the school. We believe that this experience enthuses children about performing, giving them the motivation and confidence to keep singing – which we know is brilliant for wellbeing.
Museums and Local Trips
Each year we take children to visit local places which support their curriculum learning, including but not exclusive to; Duxford, Maidstone Museum, Lullingstone Roman Villa and Drusillas Park. We know that these trips help to provide real world context for their learning. Children in Year 6 also undertake a local ‘safety in action’ experience and attend a performance by a theatre group teaching alcohol and drug awareness.
Houses of Parliament
As part of our teaching of democracy and British values, we take children in upper Key Stage Two to visit the houses of parliament biannually. We believe it is important for them to understand the institution of government and their rights and responsibilities as citizens of a democracy
In Year 5 and 6 children have an opportunity to go on a two night residential visit. These visits are important to help children develop independence and resilience, as well as giving them a fantastic opportunity to partake in a range of outdoor adventurous activities.
In school immersive experiences and visitors
We have a range of visitors into school to enrich children’s learning, these include immersive experience days such as ‘Ancient Greeks’ and ‘Romans’ day. We have also had a hands on animal handling experience, a visit from an Olympic athlete and a birds of prey display. Additionally to this we have annual visits from the fire service, teaching both fire and water safety, the police and a local magistrate.
This is an area of our curriculum enrichment that we are still developing. We have undertaken some friendlies with local schools and in 2021 – 2022 we have taken part in a girls football tournament at Maidstone United’s Gallagher stadium and are looking forward to a mixed tournament in the autumn. Children in Year 6 undertake ‘bikeability’ providing them with the skills to ride their bicycles safely on public roads. This course also provides them with an introduction to the highway- code – which is crucial for some of our children who regularly drive horses on public roads. We hope to continue to expand this offer as we understand the value of children engaging in sport for both their mental and physical wellbeing, and the part that sporting competition has to play in that.
Spiritual development opportunities
As a Church of England Primary School we value spiritual development in all individuals, pupils and staff. There are opportunities for this throughout the school day including but not limited to daily worship. We also have seasonal church services, which are important and valued as both spiritual and community events. These are; A Harvest Festival, held on a Sunday with the local congregation, a Christingle and an Easter Service. The vicar also comes to supports our spiritual development, by giving pastoral support to staff as well as leading acts of worship.
We work with the Christian Charity ‘The Family Trust’. Much of their work feeds into supporting children’s spiritual development, through Acts of Worship, an annual pantomime performance and Easter Workshops. They also support the wider curriculum development by providing a Christians Against Poverty money course to children in Year 5 and 6.
A range of afterschool clubs are available at Laddingford to enable children to pursue their interests including but not limited to Art, Chess, Football, Karate and Dance.