PICTURES: The circus comes to East Preston school

East Preston Junior School pupils
East Preston Junior School pupils

Pupils returning to class for the autumn term where amazed to find the circus had come to school.

A big top tent awaited on the playing field of East Preston Junior school, where children took workshops in circus skills.

Hula hoop fun

Hula hoop fun

The seven to 11 year olds got the chance to try diablo, plate spinning, gymnastics and ribbon dancing.

Emma Rylands, a year six teacher, said: “The pupils absolutely loved it.

“Their faces when they saw the tent! They couldn’t believe it.

“It was a great bonding experience and a way for them to get to know eachother, especially for the year three’s who are new to the school.

Trying out the diablo

Trying out the diablo

“It was really nice to get them working in teams at the beginning of the year.”

The 250 pupils were split into workshop groups according to which of the four school houses they belonged to, giving them a chance to interact with children of different ages.

In the evening, parents were invited to a performance at the big top where they watched their children show off their new skills. Then the pupils joined their families in the audience to watch a show by professional group Circus Pazaz.

One pupil remarked: “I am proud of myself for conquering a fear and performing in front of strangers.”

Plate spinning

Plate spinning

Another pupil said: “This was the best day of my life!”

The workshops are just one example of the circus theme that has been incorporated into all subjects for the first half term, from English to maths.

They have sparked activities including circus poetry, diary writing, character descriptions and debates, discussing issues such as whether animals should be allowed in the circus.

The whole school are also writing a book based on the circus, which will be published for their library.

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