Skills for Life
At Northway we strongly believe in developing our students skills for life. We work in a cross-curricular manner; on the academic subjects alongside developing independence and self-help skills.
It is vital that our children start on these skills at an early age so they can be as independent as they possibly can be. To help with this Northway provides an enriched curriculum, beginning in the early years and going right through to year 6. This covers the following areas and more!...
- Toileting - toilet training, washing hands etc.
- Dressing - shoes & socks, coat, changing for swimming & PE, zips/buttons
- Eating - tolerating being in the lunch room, eating somewhere other than at home, asking for & choosing foods, using cutlery, drinking from a cup, trying new foods
- Organisational skills - putting coats on pegs, getting their own bag, following a timetable, sorting out their workbasket
We have weekly sessions in the kitchen to teach the children cooking skills; from chopping, spreading and mixing ingredients to following a simple recipe to make different foods.
As many of our children have eating issues, cooking is a time for us to explore foods in a safe environment without an expectation of eating. Many of our pupils will have 'Fun with Food' sessions to explore the texture, smell and look of different foods, to begin to feel less anxious about eating and drinking.
A report released by the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) [25 November 2010] and funded by the Growing Schools Programme, claims that teaching gardening to children and young people with special educational needs has a positive impact on their development.
We have gardening areas around school that the pupils help to tend to. They learn about caring for plants, insects, animals and the environment.
We grow flowers, vegetables, fruits and herbs of all different types!
Every class goes out on an educational visit once a week. On these visits pupils learn about:
- The community around them by visiting local sites of interest e.g. places of worship, other schools, libraries
- They learn to cope with being out and about in London by going for walks in the park or visiting shopping centres for example
- Using skills practised at school in a real world context e.g. using money to pay for shopping in a supermarket or crossing a road safely with adults at a pelican crossing
Many of our pupils find it difficult to cope with the sensory pressures of being out and about and parents often talk to us about finding it hard to take their children out, so we aim to help by giving pupils experiences of the world with the support of our staff teams.