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provision throughout the year. Sport is inclusive at Swanbourne and from our 7s upwards, both girls and boys take part in an extensive summer fix- ture programme that allows every child to play regularly, and we have also have the indoor nets for the winter months. Tose that show a particular talent and passion can take part in our Winter Training Programme.” The extensive grounds at Swanbourne make for an incredible


cross-country course in the winter months – there is the challenge of the Swanbourne Endeavour, a gruelling, wet and muddy obstacle race and the Swanbourne Chase, the famous inter-prep school competition that attracts over 300 entrants each year. During the lockdown, the school was determined that its sporting


ethos remained. Te challenge for the Sports Department was to look at ways to ensure the sporting curriculum could continue to be delivered in an engaging and effective way, and pupils could be continuously supported in keeping active and developing their sporting skills whilst the school was temporarily closed. Te team put into place a programme of virtual, interactive sports


lessons for pupils to do at home with remote support from their teachers. Te sports staff filmed drills, talking the pupils through skill practices that would help develop and sharpen techniques whilst away from school. As an example, when the lockdown happened the school was entering into its cricket season – the challenge for the Sports Department was how to teach such an outdoor sport virtually for pupils at home. Mr Burton-Pye explains: “Our cricket facilities here at Swanbourne House are second to none and provide an amazing space for the children to develop into cricketers. However, we needed


to create lessons away from these facilities that would be fun, provide a challenge and help hone and develop skills. We filmed a series of virtual cricket lessons for pupils that broke down and demonstrated different drills, working on bowling, batting and fielding. All of the interactive drills could be followed step by step, with detailed instructions from our team, and using items around the home such as chairs, walls and tennis rackets.” Although sport is taken seriously, enjoyment is vital for Mr Burton-Pye, “We have a broad range of sporting activities on offer and we ensure they are all done in an enjoyable environment that allows all children to develop an interest and enthusiasm for sport that they will carry with them throughout their life. Te rationale around this broad selection of activities is based not only on the school’s aims but around published research that suggests variety, not specialisation, is the most beneficial approach to children’s sporting and physical development.”


Swanbourne House is an independent day and boarding prep school for 3 – 13 years. The school is set in 55 acres of Buckinghamshire countryside just 20 minutes from central Milton Keynes. Find out more and see our virtual tour online at swanbourne.org or email admissions@swanbourne.org or call 01296 720264


ALL THINGS BUSINESS


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