Mackenzie Thorpe Centre

The Mackenzie Thorpe Centre is an independent specialist school based in South Bank, Redcar and Cleveland for pupils aged 5-19

Working together to inspire, support, celebrate and equip autistic and neurodiverse people to fulfil their potential in life.

In tutorial, the children read a book called ‘How full is your bucket?’ The children enjoyed reading about Felix who realised that he, and everyone else, has an invisible bucket above their heads. When Felix has a rotten morning the water in the bucket slowly tips out making him feel worse. Then something wonderful happens and someone is kind to him and some water drips back into the bucket.  This makes Felix feel good.

The children had a fantastic discussion about how we need to be kind to people as we don’t know what kind of day they have had and how much water is in people’s buckets. After the discussion we understood that we need to be kind to each other to try and fill people’s buckets up.

Therefore, we decided to make a bucket with kind words and phrases written about people in the class. The children thought hard about what we like about each other. They made their bucket, decorated it and then wrote what they liked about each other. The buckets stay in the classroom and when someone’s bucket needs filling, they read what other people like about them.

In English, we adapted the very famous story ‘We’re going on a bear hunt’ and made a sensory story for the children. The family in the story went looking for a polar bear in Winter and went through some extreme conditions such as crunching through snow and wading through icy waters. The children enjoyed exploring different senses by looking, touching with their hands and using their feet to feel the different textures of ice, cold water and the crunching of fake snow. The children explored different adjectives and then ordered the main events of the book on a story mountain.