Throughout the year our Year 8 pupils were always delighted to have visited Chiswick House, one of the Black Swan Care Homes in Norwich, and our friends at Harford Manor School. As part of the school’s Collaborative Community Outreach Programme, listening to the fascinating stories and observations of the residents of the care home as well as learning about the interests and opinions of the pupils at Harford Manor School, has without fail been an absolute pleasure.

Their DT projects, although incomplete unfortunately due to COVID-19, were made with earnest, and did justice to the Year 8’s stunning creativity and imagination. Gracie and Alex especially enjoyed using the laser cutter to design their engraved game boards, while La’Sean and Louis put the laser cutter to effective use when creating their ‘Green Soldier’ playing pieces. Elliott’s computer game was particularly well received as was Ryan’s’ Rocking Ball’ bearing game idea. Amelie’s board game, with its carefully painted and decorated sea theme, was fantastic and Lily-Ella, Connie and Zoe’s ‘Swan Coin Collecting Box’ captured the imagination, only in need of a coat of varnish to provide that beautiful finishing touch. Last but certainly not least, Millie and Cara’s ‘Maze’ often caught the eye of any pupil coming into the department for DT lessons too.

Our friends both at Harford Manor School and at Chiswick House in Norwich deserve our huge thanks for being so hospitable during each visit our pupils made. We treasured the opportunity to spend time and be together to nibble a few biscuits and share some stories and experiences of our school, even more so now we have not been able to do much of this of late.

“We would love to stay at Harford Manor more.” Ella B

“It was nice to visit the residents again.” Louis M

They all certainly enjoyed making something based around the needs and interests of someone else, a key component of a user centred design exercise that they are likely to experience in Year 9 next year.