Yeam-building day helps children prepare for move to senior school

Team building day at Anthony Gell School, Wirksworth.
Team building day at Anthony Gell School, Wirksworth.

Children starting secondary school next month enjoyed team-building activities and making new friends.

Year 6 pupils spent a day at Anthony Gell School, in Wirksworth where they tackled challenges set by chemical company Lubrizol.

Grace Gibbons from Wirksworth Junior School, said: “It’s been massive fun. I’ve chatted to loads of people I’ve never met before, so it’s been useful for making friends. I’m looking forward to September now and I know I don’t have to worry all summer about it.”

As well as a murder mystery session to encourage the use of forensics, pupils were invited to make a structure from 386 sticks and a big bag of rubber bands.

Lawrie Peck, from Hazlewood based Lubrizol, ran the sessions, supported by engineering technician Mason Bell. Lawrie said: “The tasks we line up encourage team work and collaboration, as well as concentration and problem solving. It’s a great way for them to make relationships and also provides leaders a chance to see pupils ahead of September.

“The youngsters thoroughly enjoyed creating tetrahedrons - these structures are how shopping centres, airports, warehouses and any big buildings start out, so it was great for them to learn a little about physics and forces.

“The task simply won’t be successful if they don’t work together, so it forces them to communicate, and gives them a real sense of achievement to see their structure standing at the end.”

Katy Lowe, assistant headteacher, said: “This is the 10th year we have carried out this level of transition and it allows the students to feel part of the school community very early on.

“A lot of the children will have accessed the site before, as the leisure centre is based here, but it’s a great way for them to make friends and feel less intimidated on the first day of term.

“The children know that secondary school is a step up academically, but this project allows them to experience success, think creatively and inspires lateral thinking too. We’re very grateful to Lubrizol for running this annual event.”

The firm runs the two-day sessions every year, helping to introduce 150 pupils from 12-14 primaries into the Wood Street school.