Last week Post 16 students at Laleham Gap School in Ramsgate had another hands-on learning experience in store and behind the scenes at Tesco Extra.
Post 16 teacher Paul Ursell said: “Learning in the classroom is obviously crucial. However, I find my students often consolidate that learning best when in a real-life situation. The ethos here at Laleham Gap is to get students actively learning the skills they need for life whenever we can.”
With the students learning about healthy eating and managing money Mr Ursell arranged the trip with Tesco’s Community Officer Sue Dent. Together they set the pupils the challenge of checking the prices and sourcing fresh ingredients for a healthy meal.
Mr Ursell said: “I asked them to get the ingredients for a Ratatouille that they would be making later that week for our French cultural day. I think it is far better, whenever you can, to make it meaningful. We were buying ingredients that we actually needed rather than just made up to test them. Students can see the point so want to get it right.”
They each got a chance to purchase the items and Sue arranged for students to act as a cashier and run the items through the tills. As well as being enjoyable it gave them an insight into the world of work. A further insight came when they went out into the back. Here students got to learn about what needs to be kept in a chiller and what in a freezer – by walking in to Tesco’s massive chillers and freezers. A few seconds at -18 degrees was certainly something to remember.
Students also had hands-on experience with the fishmonger, learning about the different fish available. Finally, students ended their trip with an opportunity to make a bespoke muesli to add to their repertoire for future breakfasts.
Sue Dent commented on “how engaged the students were,” saying it “was a pleasure to show the students around the store and watch them discovering new things.”
As well as this trip to consolidate their budgeting, shopping skills, knowledge of healthy eating and employment options Mr Ursell continues to organise similar activities for his students. The next trips planned to extend their understanding of healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle are a trip to a community allotment and then to a cycling venue to develop those skills. With a variety of speakers coming in to Post 16, term one is already packed full of rich opportunities for real-life learning to compliment classroom learning.