City Hubs beat the Covid-19 blues to bring learning joy to key worker children
Childcare and education school hubs set up by Aberdeen City Council for key worker children during the Covid-19 outbreak are already proving a massive hit with pupils and staff alike after less than two months
Happy faces and laughter have been the norm across the hubs with one five-year-old at the Airyhall Primary School-based hub saying: “I never want to leave here!”
The Airyhall hub comprises 40 families and a team of 60 staff consisting of teaching staff -including Head Teachers, Depute Head Teachers, Pupil Support Assistants, Childcare Support Workers, Subject Specialists and Early Years Practitioners - catering, janitorial and support teams and Sport Aberdeen employees.
The team have worked hard to provide the pupils with a meaningful and enjoyable programme of learning experiences and that hard work has certainly paid off. As well as supporting the digital learning set by the schools the pupil’s would normally attend, the Airyhall team have been busy providing a range of onsite activities including child-led arts projects, story-writing, STEM challenges, social distancing problem solving and even mindfulness.
With the help of Sport Aberdeen, the pre-school infant children have been kept entertained with gym sessions, outdoor hide and seek and other activities to keep everyone fit and healthy. One three-year-old girl preferred more sedate activities however, saying she liked: “Colouring in, cutting paper and sticking things”.
The positivity is echoed across the city’s other hubs including Tullos Tillydrone and Manor Park which have been set up by the Council for children and young people during the pandemic. Tillydrone Community Campus has two teams of staff and children, The A Team and Team Don with each group looking after 8-15 pupils from P1-S1.
Staff and pupils alike have been delighted with the positive, free-flowing and light-filled atmosphere at the hub, with the campus providing scope for a wide range of activities ranging from supported learning to games, arts and crafts, sports, reading, music, singing and baking.
Councillor John Wheeler, Aberdeen City Council’s Education Operational Delivery Convener, said: “My warmest thanks and congratulations go out to everyone, staff, pupils, families and partner organisations at all our current education hubs for such a wonderful job in such challenging circumstances.
“To see happy, laughing children and staff enjoying educational activities creates so much positivity for all of us at a time when good news is not always so easy to find. It’s a real testament to the enthusiasm and hard work of everyone involved that, within only a matter of weeks and under the restrictions of social distancing , the pupils feel so at home and are able to enjoy a sense of normality at our hubs”.
Aberdeen City Council’s Education Service set up six education and childcare hubs to help support key workers and their children during the pandemic and a further three hubs for children and young people.
Video shows pupils and staff at the Airyhall Hub enjoying lessons and play.