Ready 4 Action
Supporting children to lead healthy long lives
Studies have shown that the pandemic has had a worrying impact on many young people’s physical activity levels, their confidence and even their social interaction.
Ready 4 Action works with staff in schools such as Head teachers and PE leads to identify students who need extra support, due to the negative impact the pandemic has created.
Ready 4 Action, an initiative funded by Find Your Active, has already begun to help children and young people by working directly with school staff to provide opportunities for students to get active. It has been proven that children who enjoy, and are more competent and confident in physical activity, are more physically literate. Engaging early years children with the fundamental skills of play, agility, balance, coordination and movement, enhances growth and development, which contributes towards improved physical literacy.
The initiative is currently running for a period of 10 weeks and will be delivered before school, at lunch or during after school intervention clubs. With the support of school staff, children will be encouraged to participate in a safe environment, help them to regain confidence and boost social skills in order to reduce inactivity. Staff are trained on how to deliver these sessions to students to help manage and support their development, with long term change being the priority.
It’s important to ensure children and young people are encouraged to participate in physical activity and there must be opportunities available to them in their community. By working with groups and organisations who also share this ambition, we are setting up a good foundation for young people to maintain this healthy habit into adulthood. Ready 4 Action are monitoring this initiative to help understand the longer-term impact, such as how students engage with school life, physical activity levels and improved social connections, which are tracked by schools over the following two terms.
As part of Essex County Council’s Levelling Up Agenda, initiatives such as Ready 4 Action are being implemented within other areas of the county. New pre-school physical literacy breakfast clubs for 300 of the most disadvantaged reception aged children and their families in Canvey Island.
Each club will deliver a series of carefully developed sessions with physical activities that enable physical development and gross motor skills early learning goals and fine motor skills early learning goals (such as activities that will help children hold a pencil and other small tools, including scissors, paint brushes and cutlery).
The opportunity will support children to be able to concentrate better in lessons, improve interaction with other children and support them to reach GLD by the end of the year. Videos, activity cards which have a series of games and challenges will be made available to school staff and families to support long term sustainability as well as staff training, including for support staff that work with children with additional needs.