Sarah Milburn is a Senior Associate at Enabling Enterprise and this year she has been developing a great partnership with Virgin Active, using enterprise lessons to get students active! This year, Curwen Primary are taking on the lesson time project, Active Minds, to work on their teamwork and build resilience. Here, Sarah documents the lesson and shows how these students are launching enterprise in their school. This article was originally posted on the Virgin Active website.

13:55: 5 minutes until the launch

No pressure at all but this is the launch lesson of Year 5 Curwen Primary School students’ new project ‘Active Minds’ and the success of the whole project rests on Lesson 1. The students are getting changed into their P.E. kits, the hall is ready for 60 active students and the bell is about to go…

14:00: Lesson Starter – What is an Active Mind?

Bell rings. 120 footsteps draw closer. Excited chatter grows louder. Door opens.

Class 5S and 5W enter the hall eagerly awaiting the start of their Active Minds project and wondering why on earth they are dressed for P.E. What are we doing? Why are we dressed like this for enterprise? What is ‘Active Minds’ all about?

Great questions Year 5. What do you think?

Within 10 minutes and after a ‘Think, Pair, Share’ activity the students have unpicked the title, objectives and have collectively agreed on a number of definitions for ‘Active Minds’ and ‘Activeness’;

• Having lots of energy
• Having good body condition and being healthy
• Moving about
• Strong muscles
• Having a good heart
• Being ready to learn

14:15: Lesson Theory – What is the ‘Active Minds’ project?

They are all spot on with their definitions. The Active Minds project in collaboration with Virgin Active aims to build students enterprise skills and aspirations to succeed as they work in teams to create, launch and lead a brand new school Fitness Session to inspire students to get active. After watching a video outlining their challenge students come up with words and skills they think will be important for their project: fun, inspiring, health, activeness, anything is possible, you can do it and staying positive.

14:20: Lesson’s Main Activity – What does an Active Mind look like?

It was at this point in the lesson that students really needed to start getting active, exploring what a Fitness Session looks like and to gain some inspiration from the Virgin Active experts.

Everyone jumps to their feet to explore the first genre of Fitness Session from Virgin Active.

Video 1 is a 6 minute taster of ‘PUNCH’ where the aim is to get your arms, upper body and torso fighting fit. Dan, the virtual Fitness Instructor leads the students through a fun-filled warm-up and main activity filled with jabs, upper cuts and hooks and the room is buzzing and getting increasingly hotter.

After 6 minutes of ‘PUNCH’ students return to the floor to catch their breath and mop their brows before getting up for…
‘ZUU Chimps’ where students go back to basics and get in touch with their animal instincts in order to get active. Within a minute we have a class full of students doing ‘Frog Squats’ then becoming Bears for a mass ‘Bear Walk’ around the hall and finally the favourite of all, the ‘Gorilla’. 60 students bouncing, crawling and concentrating on getting their whole body active makes for a very active and an especially entertaining enterprise launch.

14:50: Lesson Reflection – Where to from here?

With racing heart beats, huge smiles and a lot of sweat we sit back down to start our reflection but, the students are divided. Which Fitness Session did they find the most enjoyable? Which Fitness Session got them most active? What ideas have they got for their own Fitness Session?

Students turn to their Enabling Enterprise Project Diary to give each Fitness Session a Star Rating;

• For some 3 stars were awarded to ZUU Chimps as students felt they got the chance to have fun, be silly and get every part of their body active.
• Others preferred PUNCH because students liked learning new moves and really liked working their arms.
• The remainder were fixated by FIERCE, a dance inspired Fitness Session that would allow them to combine music and creativity to get active.

Whatever genre of Fitness Session students preferred there was no doubt that the first launch lesson had been a success. When asked if they were excited about their new project they students responded with a resounding (and very loud) ‘YES!’
The students left inspired about the Fitness Session that they would soon be creating, launching and leading in their own classroom and school.

How about if we combine Karate and PUNCH? What would a Harry Potter themed Fitness Session look like Miss? Why don’t we design a Fitness Session with drums and animal movement during Breakfast Club?

Whatever they decide there is no doubt that these Year 5 students are going to be very enterprising in their approach to inspiring activeness in their fellow students. They left in anticipation of a whole term of becoming Fitness Companies and showcasing their work at the End of Term Let’s Get Active Launch.

Bell rings.

15:00: Launch Lesson – finished!


Virgin Active are supporting Enabling Enterprise to give students enterprise skills and bring the world of work into the classroom. If you would like to find out how you can get involved and bring enterprise into your classroom, get in touch!

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