Primary school lets four-year-old pupils play with real KITCHEN KNIVES, hammers and saws instead of plastic toys – to enhance their ‘real world experiences’
- Rockland St Mary Primary School in Norwich lets pupils play with the items
- One teacher said it has been a ‘success’ despite ‘one incident with a child’
- Staff want to give children an environment to help them link home experiences
A primary school in Norfolk is allowing pupils as young as four to play with real hammers, saws and kitchen knives in order to enhance their ‘real world experiences’.
Rockland St Mary Primary School in Norwich has decided to let pupils play with the objects as part of the ‘curiosity approach’.
The school, which teaches students between the ages of four and 11 has been trialling the project for the last four weeks and one teacher has said it had been a ‘success’ despite having ‘one incident with a child’.
Zoe Marsden, 31, who has been working at the school for five years said the project is ‘anti pretend things’.
Children at Rockland St Mary Primary School are pictured above using hammers and pliers
One young boy was getting to grips with a saw and was seen cutting through some wood
These two boys were seen lifting bricks and piling them together, as the school tries to give them real life experiences
The teachers are letting pupils use the items in order for them to learn how to manage risks that come with using them
‘We want them to use their own innovative and manage the risks that will come with them. They will learn to be resourceful, knowing if they drop the teapot, it will smash.
‘But to also know that there are no consequences, that if it smashes on the floor we can sort it – but to know there is now danger and to be careful.
‘We respect the children to be trusted with these objects, and the children respect us back more.’
Zoe continued: ‘We have had only one incident with a child. A little boy was trying to open a jar and he was pulling and pulling and ended up hurting his elbow because he couldn’t open the jar.
The school (pictured above) has been supported by its sponsor and hopes to give pupils real world experiences
All together now! Teacher Zoe Marsden is seen instructing the children on how to best use the items
‘But again, that is another lesson for him.’
The school’s sponsor, Sapientia Education Trust, has supported the new approach.
Its promise is to give children more real world experience compared, while encouraging them to be more creative in how they use the objects to play.
Zoe said: ‘As children are exploring they are making links that pretend things don’t give them. If you give a child a plastic house or plastic kitchen, you are directing the play for them.
‘Whereas with the curiosity approach, they can learn how to measure, they can use real items with real fruit. They can use real ceramic items, so they know what happens if they drop it.’
This young girl was pictures lining up blocks of wood and have even started using adult clothing as ‘dress up clothes’
Children at the school are given real utensils instead of plastic ones (boy chopping an apple, left and girl using a hammer, right)
She highlighted how the staff want the environment to be the third teacher in order for them to make links to home experiences.
‘Even our dressing up clothes are adults’ clothes and shoes, not princess outfits.
‘Some of our children have just turned four and want to clomp about in mummy’s shoes so why not give them real ones rather than plastic ones? They can reenact what they see in real life.’
Zoe said since the initiative the children have been more focused and that the new approach was having a positive impact on other areas of their development.
She added: ‘They enjoy it more because they fill like they are doing something that is in the real world. They have been very very fascinated by it all.
‘The parents have been very supportive of it all, they have really loved it.
‘We support the children to be the best they can be, they know how to manage a risk’.