Chichester College were very excited to welcome Lizzie Webb, founder of The Joggy Bear Education Programme, on Monday morning. Lizzie, remembered by many for her regular morning spot on popular breakfast show Tv-am in the 80s and 90s, held an energetic Joggy Bear class for 12 of our 3 and 4 year olds from First Steps Nursery.
The Joggy Bear Education programme, featuring a fun, six foot bear, is for pupils in the Early Years Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 and supports the National Curriculum. This multisensory programme enables children to acquire knowledge with physical movement, focusing on literacy, numeracy and personal development. Lizzie’s visit to Chichester was not only an opportunity for the nursery children to experience and enjoy the innovative programme but a really interesting learning opportunity for some of our college students who observed the class and were able to ask Lizzie and her team questions about their teaching technique.
Sue Carpenter, Senior Childcare Manager at First Steps, said: “Our children were very excited to take part. It was a lovely extension to the learning they have been enjoying at nursery with a focus on numbers and phonics and it was wonderful to see their confidence build over the session. They especially enjoyed learning the Joggy Bear song with all of the actions!”
Joggy Bear creates a happy, imaginative environment as he motivates and engages the children in creative activity learning. His shared learning mimics their world and curiosity; his rules and good choices become the children’s rules whilst he inspires and motivates participation. Evidence has shown that pupils with Special Educational needs and pupils with English as an additional language greatly benefit from participating in the programme.
Research groups have also explored the impact of exercise on the attention span of children and have found that short bursts of physical activity can have a surprisingly positive impact on improving concentration levels. Boys in particular are more engaged in learning that involves physical expression and activities. The Joggy Bear Education programme also helps to address the continuing rise in childhood obesity. In November 2017, Lizzie Webb and Debbie Flood, the founders of Creativity in Sport who developed the programme, were invited to give a talk to the Westminster Education Forum about how they are successfully incorporating physical activity into classroom learning.
Following her time with the nursery children, Lizzie and her team joined Sam Cooke, Group Director of Maths and English at Chichester College, to share their teaching technique with a group of older students.
Commenting on the experience, Sam said: “It has been an incredible afternoon with Lizzie and her team. The students were slightly anxious about participating in a times-table challenge but Lizzie quickly settled their nerves. It soon became clear that the students’ confidence was rapidly growing throughout the session. They were active and learning and left with a far better knowledge of their seven and eight times tables which was impressive in just a one hour session. One student said that he felt much more able to answer the maths question at the end of the session compared to at the start.
“After our experiences with Lizzie and her team today, we will certainly be including more active activities in our maths lessons. Our students thoroughly enjoyed the session and are more confident as a result of the experience.”
Lizzie added: The Joggy Bear Education team thoroughly enjoyed their visit to Chichester College. The response and enthusiasm from the participating children was excellent and we hope they will continue to enjoy their experience of “learning on the move” with all the activities they learned today with their teachers at Chichester College.”