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The Den and Home Learning


Dear parents of children attending The Den,

As you are aware, a great deal of how your child learns is planned individually and daily, using a combination of guided teaching, “my turn-your turn”, independent, group and whole class teaching methods.

Alongside the academic learning tasks, staff within The Den use many different teaching approaches aligned to ASD and SEND, such as TEACCH, PACE, ELSA and emotion coaching.     

It is therefore difficult to replicate this at home.

However, I would suggest that you explore the resources within the relevant Greswold School website Year Group folders for your child as these contain lots of very useful and fun learning links.  Alongside this, I shall continue to update the Greswold Inclusion and SEND page and use Tapestry to keep in touch and add familiar and helpful links for our children which you may find useful.

In terms of learning that you can continue at home, I would also advise the following:

• Lots of counting, forwards and backwards, as well as counting everyday items. 
• Practical maths games, such as hunting for shapes around the home, counting different coins, simple card games, board games or puzzles.
• Sharing stories, both books and video, and asking your child questions about the characters, pictures and the order of events.
• Developing fine motor skills by colouring and drawing, using playdoh, writing numbers and letters, their name or other letters or words they can attempt. 
• Simple exercises, balances, dancing and movement will help their core strength and gross motor skills. 


You may also wish to add any examples of home learning to your child’s Tapestry account.

As an example of the routine your child would be used to, the following is a typical timetable for a day within The Den:


  • Come in, hang their coat up and wash their hands.
  • Choosing time and name writing.
  • Morning register followed by identifying the day of the week and the weather (these are accompanied by a song). The visual timetables is then shared for the day.
  • Individual tray tasks which normally include a Literacy / Phonics, Maths and a fine motor such as a jigsaw and a directed play activity developing turn taking and enriching vocabulary.
  • Outside break time.
  • Snack Time.  Turn-taking, sharing, speaking/listening, choosing a snack or using communication boards to make choices.
  • Main short teaching input led by Miss Hicks (Monday - Literacy focus, Tuesday - Maths focus, Thursday - Phonics focus, Friday Topic or Science focus, usually a combination of speaking and listening skills, taking turn and answering questions). This is followed by a focus task alongside a directed play activity to develop the use of language.
  • Outside motor break.
  • Lunch time and indoor choosing.
  • Relaxation.
  • Outside lunch break.
  • In the afternoons, The Den becomes a focus for creative activities, such as painting, making, drawing, sensory exploration, reading and library times, outdoor forest school, free choice exploration and child-led learning and specific interventions.


Throughout the day, we use songs as signals for subject introductions and transition times, such as tidying up, washing hands and lunch time.  This all helps to structure the day for the children.  We also have a dedicated P.E. time involving playing games with small and large equipment, platforms and benches to develop strength, agility and team work (this is on a Wednesday).
The Den offers your children a nurturing, calm, positive and welcoming environment in which to learn and explore. 


Every interaction, however small, is a learning opportunity. 


We are also blessed to have two very special commodities: time and space. 


It is this time and space which allows each child to learn and grow at their own pace and for us to develop our understanding of their unique strengths and needs.


Click this link to see the photo suggestions:

Familiar Websites for The Den Children:

Count to 100 Song

Our children particularly enjoy this counting to 100 song.

Alphablocks Letter Sounds and Blending:
Tricky Words Songs:
These are songs which help children to learn their sight words (words which cannot be blended with sounds).

Tricky Words and Sight Words Song

A tricky word/sight word song for children.

Phase 3 Tricky Words Song Say Hello To

Phase 3 Tricky Words song.

Wake Up! School Exercise Video

Here is a "Wake Up Shake Up" exercise video which all children from The Den are familiar with.

Speech and Language Help is helpful for parents of children with speech and language difficulties.


Visual Supports at Home

Miss Lansdown has found a nice set of pictures which can be used at home to show children choices for activities
(please see the .pdf file called Visual Supports).

This is similar to the system we use within The Den and that autistic children often find crucial for communication, comfort and structure.

They can be used to create a timetable or to show activities which will happen "Now" and "Next".

Please also take some time to look through this great section from the National Autistic Society which gives further guidance and resources for the use of visuals (see attached website link called Using Visuals at Home).

Free Audio books from Audible
Audible have now made their range of children's audio books completely free to stream from any device.
The link is here:

Phonics: How to pronounce pure sounds | Oxford Owl

Learn how to pronounce all 44 phonics sounds, or phonemes, used in the English language with these helpful examples from Suzy Ditchburn and her daughter. Fin...

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