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Extra-Curricular

At Happy Hearts, we offer a variety of extra-curricular activities to our children, dependent on their interests, to help enrich their learning.

Yoga

Yoga helps children focus more effectively

Yoga helps children to become increasingly aware of their mind and body, making it easier to manage their emotions, build resilience and improve their health.

Through our weekly yoga sessions at Happy Hearts, our children learn to manage stress and align their bodies and minds through breathing exercises taught by our specialist teachers. They also learn to strengthen their coordination, motor development, physical stamina and concentration through stretching and balancing poses that work through a range of muscles in their bodies.

By mastering new poses combined with breathing exercises, your child learns to focus better, gains more confidence, and develops a peaceful state of mind necessary for healthy and calm responses to the challenges within his/her environment.

Music

Music is an essential element in cognitive development

At Happy Hearts we provide an environment enriched with singing and music. By making music and singing songs, children find alternative means of self-expression, as well as an outlet for their feelings and emotions.

Humans are wired to be sensitive to sound patterns, and this sensitivity allows music to foster communication and imagination in your child, helping them to speak more clearly, develop a larger vocabulary, and strengthen their social and emotional skills.

Forest School

Exploring the great outdoors stimulates children’s imagination and sparks their sense of wonder

At Happy Hearts, our children are taken on weekly forest school sessions, where they have unique opportunities to learn through exploration of the natural world in a hands-on and thoughtful manner. In these sessions, children experience sensory child-led outdoor play, where they can play, experience space and movement, as well as the sensory stimulation required for their healthy development, whilst learning to become environmentally conscious.

The magic of the forest school programme is that it can increase your child’s confidence and self-esteem through exploration, problem solving, and being encouraged to learn how to assess and take appropriate risks depending on their environment.

Outdoor learning encourages children to think of learning as an ongoing process instead of something done in the classroom. It also encourages children to become self-starters, helps to develop their critical thinking skills, as well as their appreciation and respect for the environment.

Creative Art

Creative Art and Design ignite children’s imagination and takes them on the wonderful journey of exploration and creativity.

Through creative art and design children learn to observe, describe, analyse and interpret their surroundings, whilst finding an outlet to express their emotions and imaginations. Art and design provide great learning experiences, where children can be introduced to cultures from around the world, and in discovering that there is more than one right way to make art, they can grow in confidence by taking pride in their original artistic creations.

At Happy Hearts, we provide a wide range of opportunities for children to explore and use various media and materials. Children experiment with media and materials finding out about their properties, modifying and manipulating them. Children are encouraged to be imaginative as they explore the world of pretence, building on their experiences of the real world and transforming them into something new.

Children’s learning and development is enhanced as they experiment with different ways of creating and designing through the use and exploration of a variety of materials, experimenting with colours, textures, shapes and forms.

We use a range of resources and approaches to encourage children to choose and use materials in an open-ended way to encourage their tactile and fine motor development.

Cookery

Cooking & baking in the early years is a great, fun experience which offers a wealth of learning and development.

Cooking is an authentic experience through which children can gain a range of skills, specifically in mathematics, communication and language. It also helps children understand traditions, whilst encouraging them to explore unknown tastes, smells, or textures. Following a recipe also helps children to learn to read for a purpose and follow instructions. They can talk about their likes and dislikes and about healthy eating. When children can complete activities independently their confidence soars.

At Happy Hearts, our cooking & baking activities promote all seven areas of the Early Years Foundation Stage, and because children enjoy the experience so much, they are not even aware they are learning about numbers or developing skills. As well as developing all seven areas, baking and cooking is a sensory experience, engaging often all five senses making it a more memorable experience, and truly engaging the children in the early years.

Cooking gives children knowledge about food, where it comes from, and what is healthy and unhealthy. We know these are all important skills to give to children in order to encourage them to make positive food choices. Our regular cooking and baking activities provide children with valuable self-help skills and learn some delicious recipes which they can share with their parents.

French

Learning a second language early in life enhances overall cognitive skills and improves brain development.

Babies and young children have an insatiable appetite to learn and communicate. Uninhibited, they do not mind in which language they do this, as long as the exchange they have is full of meaning and is fun!

Studies have shown repeatedly that foreign language learning increases critical thinking skills, creativity, problem-solving skills, and flexibility of mind in young children.

The benefits of learning a second language for children in early years:

  • They get a wonderful head start, as they will not struggle when starting a language at school.
  • They will be confident to speak the language in an authentic accent.
  • They flourish and develop socially in any group activity.
  • They will be provided with the opportunity to explore another culture, to develop an open mind, to broaden their horizons.
  • They gain confidence as they are able to converse in a foreign language, this adds value to their future prospect later in life.

At Happy Hearts learning an additional language is done through an immersive approach which incorporates a variety of songs, music, and rhymes, as well as learning key words of everyday items around them and everyday phrases.

Tennis

Research has shown that children who play tennis are less likely to engage in risky behaviour

Through physical participation and practical hands-on experiences, children develop their hand, body and eye coordination movement and racket skills, whilst having a lot of fun. As well as developing their gross and fine motor skills, tennis helps children develop problem solving skills and become disciplined. It teaches them how to work best in a team, listen to directions and play fairly.

At Happy Hearts, tennis lessons make great use of visual & auditory learning. For instance, the coaches make effective use of seen or observed things, including pictures, demonstrations, and videos to demonstrate how things should be done correctly.

Every tennis lesson involves music, which provides the correct rhythm and timing for doing each movement or exercise. The children listen carefully and watch the coaches demonstrate each movement whilst following their instructions to the rhythm of music.

Science

Science education in early childhood harnesses children’s natural curiosity and instils in them a love of learning.

Children are naturally curious, so, by tapping into their natural predispositions early on, during this key developmental phase, we can nurture and establish a positive approach to science education that will stay with them into the future.

Studies have shown that teaching science in early years helps children to develop their senses and overall awareness. It teaches them key life skills, including an ability to communicate, how to be organised and remain focused. It encourages them to engage directly with their environment, ask questions and form their own opinions based on their observations.

At Happy Hearts, we provide fun, active, hands-on, and exciting science activities that encourage our children to explore and experiment, so that they can begin to make sense of the world around them and gain some understanding of how things work. Through these awe-inspiring activities our children observe and learn that things change and that there are processes in order for these changes to occur. As a result, in nurturing the children’s natural sense of adventure and curiosity, our developmentally appropriate scientific activities help your child develop a lifelong love of learning.

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