The Peninsula Pathways programme for primary school students aims to raise aspirations and inspire children to think about a healthcare profession in the future. From an access perspective, the student life cycle now commences much earlier and our programme starts at primary school age to help children think about a career in healthcare and what this means.
Right to Read Scheme
The Right to Read Scheme, run by Plymouth Children in Poverty (PCiP) and funded by Plymouth Drake Foundation, sees students from across Peninsula Medical School drop in online to read a story to pupils and follow it up with a discussion on the book’s message.
Each pupil then receives their own book, funded by Plymouth Drake Foundation, wrapped and with a name and sticker inside by non-profit organisation The Story Gifters.
The initiative was trialled earlier this year based on the knowledge that many children across the UK do not own a book, and that early years reading has been even further impacted by the pandemic.
Kerry Bidewell, Campaign Co-Ordinator at PCiP, said:
"Sitting with these children as they excitedly answer questions on the stories, make insightful observations, and meet new role models, it is hard to believe many do not meet expected reading standards. I’m really grateful to everyone at Peninsula Medical School for making the programme work. We’re looking for more corporate funding to continue rollout to more schools and year groups, so look forward to seeing what else we can do going forward."
Sumbel Khan, WAMS Co-President (top right), said:
"When I was told about the project, I was really keen to get involved. Reading skills are crucial to develop literacy, creativity and writing skills which are essential for life. I know these years are where my love for reading stemmed. Being able to deliver the storytelling events has been a highlight of the WAMS calendar year for me, seeing the students' eyes widen in anticipation of the next page. It was a pleasure to answer some weird and wonderful questions about being a doctor. An honour to be part of such a special initiative and on behalf of WAMS, we look forward to what more there is to come."
Teddy Bear Hospital
Teddy Bear Hospital is part of a national scheme for primary school children. The main aim is to provide a positive and fun experience for children, whilst at the same time building trust and reducing their anxiety when visiting a doctor or going into hospital.
Our ‘Teddy Doctors’ are our volunteer medical students, who visit local primary schools and offer hands-on workshop-based activities such as ‘what’s in the doctors bag’, ‘exploring sight’, ‘our skeleton and bones’, ‘hand hygiene’ and a ‘teddy consultation’. This national scheme is also a great way of getting children to think about health at an early age.
For more information or to book a session please contact our WAMS team:
Plymouth and Cornwall: email@example.com
Torbay, Exeter and East Devon: firstname.lastname@example.org
"Just attended the teddy hospital with my son. Brilliant thanks! We all loved it and think it’s an amazing scheme. Our five year old really enjoyed himself and is looking forward to nursing his teddy back to good health.”
“I just wanted to say how great the Teddy Bear Hospital was! Our children absolutely loved it and it was such a lovely way to end our topic this half term. Please can you pass on our thanks to all of the students who made this experience possible for our children.”
The Children's University
What is the Children's University?
The Children’s University is part of a national organisation offering children aged 5–14 years an exciting and innovative programme of high quality learning opportunities, with a focus on rewarding participation and encouraging engagement with learning. The Children’s University introduces children to the joy of learning, develops their confidence and helps build aspirations for bright futures. As part of this national scheme, the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, offer ‘learning destination’ workshops to help primary school children think about what a career in healthcare means. The aspiration building activities cover topics such as ‘teddy bear hospital’, ‘my visit to the dentist’, 'basic life support' and ‘asthma and airways’.
The Children’s University also offers parents a more informal and accessible way to become involved in their children’s learning, as Children’s University provision is delivered outside school hours, evenings, weekends and during school holidays.
How it works
Children are given their own ‘Passport to Learning’ in which they travel to various learning destinations and collect hours of learning towards nationally recognised awards. For every event your child attends, they get a stamp in their passports, which they save up to earn bronze, silver and gold certificates.
Children who participate are rewarded for their learning based on the number of hours attendance and are presented with Bronze, Silver or Gold certificates at a graduation ceremony organised through the University of Plymouth.
You can sign up through your child’s school. If the school is not already a part of Children’s University, then they can become one by contacting us.
“A BIG thank you, my daughter absolutely loved her time and all the interactive sections related by an exceptional group of very accommodating young professionals. I never knew you could make teaching on the correct way to wash your hands so fun! Lily was full of beans after the workshop, overflowing with knowledge about everything you taught which she NEEDS to tell all her classmates about in school. She was already planning on attending next week for a follow up appointment with her bear but I explained it doesn’t quite work like that!”
Millfields Inspired is a charity created by the Millfields Trust, whose aim it is to work with the seven primary schools in the Stonehouse area of Plymouth to get their Year 5 children thinking about the world of education and work. The Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry supports this programme by inviting school children to visit our facilities here in Plymouth and take part in various hands-on workshop-based activities.
This is a fabulous way of stimulating the children to think about the world around them and the different types of healthcare professions that are available. As the programme is delivered by our own students, this is a strong, positive message to the 9 and 10 year olds that this could be them in the not too distant future, delivering immense power and making future opportunities very realistic and achievable.
“Millfields Inspired objectives are to work with young people and their families from the neighbourhood, in order to provide a pathway from school to future career. It delivers the successful Widening Horizons programme into the seven local primary schools of Stonehouse. This programme, which is now in its tenth year, aims to inspire young people by giving them an experience and a taste for the world of work, in order to inform their future career choices.
This is a real ‘hands-on’ opportunity to use the equipment that doctors and dentists use and to understand and experience the different careers that are available within the medical and dental profession.”
Josanne Stewart, Development Manager, Millfields Inspired