Daily Clubs

We run:

  • A very successful Games Club at lunchtime and after school.
  • PE Clubs during lunchtime and Form Time.
  • Art Club

St Nicks is the green heart of York

At St Nicks we run a variety of different activities within our 24 acre nature reserve. The majority of our time is spent in our woodlands where we do activities such as den building, fire lighting, cooking on the fire, craft activities, games, challenges and nature identification.  We also use tools such as whittling knives, saws, loppers and secateurs – either to make things such as bows and arrows or to do practical conservation tasks such as coppicing – a traditional woodland management technique.  

The staff member leading the group (Freya) is Forest School trained and uses the Forest School ethos in sessions. This involves giving children and young people choice and freedom in deciding what activities they take part in and following their lead of interests. There are always a few options of activities to get involved with and as the group visit every week for a term then they got lots of chance to build up skills and try new things. It is also important to give the group a chance to explore more risky activities such as using tools, climbing trees or making a fire, in a safe setting that is fully risk assessed, with the group learning how to assess dangers themselves and how to protect against them. Using this framework enables children and young people to flourish in a variety of ways. We have noticed an increase in confidence, resilience, teamwork, enthusiasm, communication, problem-solving skills and emotional well-being.


Duke of Edinburgh Award (DoE)

What is the Duke of Edinburgh’s (DofE) Award?

A life-changing experience. A fun time with friends. An opportunity to discover new interests and talents. A tool to develop essential skills for life and work. A recognised mark of achievement; respected by employers.

The DofE is many things to many people, supporting generations to successfully navigate adult life.

14-24 year-olds can do a DofE programme at one of three progressive levels which, when successfully completed, leads to a Bronze, Silver or Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.

There are four sections to complete at Bronze and Silver level and five at Gold. They involve helping the community/environment, becoming fitter, developing new skills, planning, training for and completing an expedition and, for Gold only, working with a team on a residential activity.

Any young person can do their DofE – regardless of ability, gender, background or location. Achieving an Award isn’t a competition or about being first. It’s all about setting personal challenges and pushing personal boundaries.

Through a DofE programme young people have fun, make friends, improve their self-esteem and build confidence. They gain essential skills and attributes for work and life such as resilience, problem-solving, team-working, communication and drive, enhancing CVs and university and job applications. Top employers recognise the work-ready skills Award holders bring to their business.

For more information please visit: https://www.dofe.org/do/what/

DofE at Danesgate
We are very proud of the achievements of our students, where last year we had a group who successfully completed their bronze award and we currently have an bronze and silver group coming towards the end of their programme.
As part of the completion of the DofE we have seen students develop their resilience and new life skills, by completing a wide range of activities including:
  • Volunteering at a nursing home
  • Volunteering at a local nursery
  • Starting community improvement projects including litter picking. 
  • The successful completion of residential expeditions, which involved hiking, outdoor cooking and camping.

The students had an amazing time and had to overcome new personal challenges to ensure all members of the team completed each challenge. 

Get involved
DofE is open to students from Year 9 to Year 11.  If you want to be involved please talk to your Key Worker or to Luke Hammond who will then be able to provide you with more information.

Primary provision swimming

All primary classes have swimming lessons each year at New Earswick Swimming Pool.

The lessons provided opportunities for them to develop essential water safety skills; improve their fitness and introduce a lifelong interest. The structured sessions teach our young people how to swim proficiently and gain confidence and awareness in water. The pupils have fun and always look forward to their swimming lessons.”


Examples of staff and parental feedback

“The swimming lessons have provided our children with a safe opportunity to learn to swim, when they previously haven’t been able to access swimming lessons.”

“I think it’s perfect!” 

“The children in PC1 looked forward to their swimming lessons each week and have thoroughly enjoyed taking part in an activity that was outside of school.”