A Big Thank You!

Kensington School year 6 with class teacher Miss Jubin (2)The Arty Tardy Pilot scheme has now come to an end. In a way I feel sad because I met and worked with some amazing people who I will miss especially are the fabulous children from Kensington, Godwin and Ad-Deen Primary SchoMyself and Ms Omoleols.

The project was originally set to run for 6 weeks but it was extended to 3 months and I was a great success. It has been a lot of hard work, not only for me as it was the first project of that magnitude I have ever attempted but also for the school staff involved.

I also have to thank my publicity campagin manager Anthony Harvison for his continual and unwavering support throughout the campaign – whilst I tried to juggle my PGCE and the pilot scheme, he was the calm voice of sanity and reassurance as well as another tireless worker who managed to secure heaps of positive publicity for the scheme and book.

Arty Tardy was entered in numerous national competitions and recently received a lovely review in AuKids magazine which you can read here http://www.aukids.co.uk/np68.shtml

Here is some of the amazing feedback I have received:

Ammenah Murray-Khalifa (Early Years Co-ordinator, Reception Teacher) Ad-Deen Primary School

It gave me the opportunity to realise just how approachable teaching children at such a young age about the lives, dilemmas and disabilities others face. The reception children at Ad-Deen Primary School embraced this topic with such enthusiasm for what is often a difficult and unapproachable area. The lessons allowed the opportunity for children as young as four and five to express their opinions and experiences and reflect on their behaviour towards others in various circumstances.
The positive impact this project has been so profound. The children have become more aware of themselves and others, self-monitoring their own behaviour, being more considerate and tolerant, acknowledging and beginning to understand that we are all different but deserve to be treated with kindness and compassion.
I feel honoured to have had the experience of working alongside Kitty in delivering this wonderful topic and seeing how it can successfully be incorporated into so many different areas of learning.

Ben Levinson (Deputy Headteacher), Kensington Primary School

TKensington School with both Deputy Headteachers Mr Levinson and Ms Omole (2)hanks very much for this. It is very exciting and I am delighted for you that it is getting so much well deserved attention. I know the children in Y6 enjoyed it greatly and, later this year, I’d like to further explore how we can integrate it into our regular curriculum so it is a core text that children study during their time at KPS. We have a considerable number of ASD children and I know this will be a significant issue for the school. Developing all children’s understanding of the challenges faced by these children will be essential in creating a harmonious, positive atmosphere at KPS.

Alison Lines (Parent Liason Officer), Godwin Primary School

Godwin School with Headteacher Mrs Philips and class teacher Ms Dodd I just wanted to say before the end of the school year what a pleasure it has been having you get involved here at Godwin Primary School, Dagenham. Not only have you allowed us to get to know Arty Tardy but you have also been a great inspiration to the parents here. They and I have really enjoyed your visits; your sharing of how you started writing and why; listening to you read pieces of your work and answer questions about them; and for also supporting them in venturing into their own writing. Staff, parents and children alike have enjoyed reading Arty Tardy and have seen how he relates to real people they know on the Autistic spectrum. Several parents have said how elements of the book remind them of their own child and hope that other readers will be able to better understand what it is like to be autistic. We are looking forward to the next book in the series and hope you will keep in touch. Thank you.

Godwin School - year 6 class    Year 3-4 class at Ad-Deen Myself in Year 3-4 class at Ad-Deen

Parent, Godwin School

I am writing to you to thank you for writing this book. It has been such an inspiration to my son and has helped him control his autism a lot better and has helped me understand what he goes through on a daily basis. So once again I thank you and can’t wait for your next book.

Kensington School year 6 (3)

Parent, Godwin School

Just thought I would let you know that the kids have been fighting over the book and who gets to read it in reading choice time. Also, my boy with autism has started to read it (first book this year!!!) and is laughing at all the jokes and saying “I do that too!”. Mum is reading it at home and they are going to finish it over the holidays. I will let you know his final thoughts.

Laura Suter (Teaching Assistant), Kensington PrimaryKensington School year 6 with class teacher Miss Jubin

I honestly love the way you’re introducing children to special needs and how they think, feel and react. Very insightful for them. Arty Tardy was comical and enticing and I’m really looking forward to the release of Bonnie Bonny!!

Joanne Campbell (Parent), Godwin SchoolGodwin School year 6 class - myself and Mrs Philips

I am writing to you to thank you for writing this book. It has been such an inspiration to my son and has helped him control his autism a lot better and has helped me understand what he goes through on a daily basis. So once again I thank you and can’t wait for your next book.

The National Autistic Society also reviewed the book and said:

AAd-Deen Headteacher Mr Ruhul Ahmed and myself (2)rty Tardy provides another useful resource for mainstream schools. Bullying often occurs when children don’t understand why people behave differently, and Arty Tardy invites both children and adults to step into the shoes of Tardy, the main character who has autism. Written through a fun narrative, the book explores sensitive issues and key features of autism, such as inflexibility, sensory differences and social misinterpretation.

This pilot has the potential to explain autism to primary school children inGodwin School - year 6 pupil a novel way, by using Arty Tardy to support creative elements of the school curriculum. It will also provide an opportunity to trial the teaching resources, particularly to ensure they are used sensitively with children in the class who have autism, as well as to develop a greater understanding and empathy amongst their peers.

I am currently finalising the teaching resource book that will accompany Arty Tardy – it will be out soon! In there will be a special Acknowledgement secArty Tardytion to all those involved in the scheme – thank you again!

In the meantime I am adding a new page on my website http://www.kittyclairmont.com entitled – Arty Tardy Scheme – it will be filled with information on how to run the scheme in your own school and lots of pics that I hope you’ll enjoy.

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