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Friday, 23 April 2021
INTERGENERATIONAL care has been very much in the media lately.
Young children spending time with elderly people has mutual benefits.
It has been shown to improve children’s language development as they talk and sing together as well as increasing their confidence as they mix with the elderly men and women.
The elderly, who may be at risk of being socially isolated, enjoy meeting the children and enjoy their company.
It reminds them of their own childhoods and caring for their own families.
Treetops Day Nursery in Henley has very much taken this on board.
Manager Sarah Billings was really excited when she heard of this research and has formed links with Acacia Lodge Care Home in Henley.
They have arranged with the activities co-ordinator Wendy Fricker for the nursery’s pre-school children to visit.
Every Thursday morning eight three- to five-year olds visit to take part in some planned activities with the elderly residents.
In the last few weeks the children and residents have made a huge flower garden collage. The children have also worked in little teams with the residents to complete jigsaw puzzles.
The children and residents have engaged in physical activities including throwing and catching soft footballs to each other.
A favourite activity of both the children and the residents is when a giant balloon is thrown around the lounge, with the children in the middle excitedly trying to get it and the residents bouncing it from their chairs. Another favourite is using a parachute to bounce small balls on top of it. The children make them go all around the room!
The children and residents love to sing lots of nursery rhymes together and sometimes the residents, children and staff put on funny hats and dance to music.
The children and the residents have developed strong bonds and are excited to see each other every week.
Staff member Gemma says: “In the coming weeks we will be doing exciting activities, arts and crafts and lots of singing and dancing.”
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