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Simon and Paul become Level 2 Helicopter Deliverers!

Congratulations to two of our Creative Associates- Simon Batchelor and Paul Andrew, who became Level 2 Helicopter Deliverers on Wednesday 18th March 2015.

They are now fully qualified to deliver the sessions in the classroom and team teach with the in-class teachers to handover the approach.

Here are some photos of them in action:


Ofsted, Kemsley Primary Academy and Helicopter Stories

We are pleased and proud to hear that one of our Helicopter Centres of Excellence, Kemsley Primary Academy, has made a huge improvement since we first started working with them and last week was awarded as an Ofsted ‘good’ school, a fantastic result!

The Early Years provision is particularly glowing as Ofsted state that ‘children have a very good start to academy life in the Nursery and Reception classes’. Headteacher, Vicky Franks, says ‘Although not officially named they were very impressed with our Helicopter Storytelling and Story Acting!’

“The use of storytelling is outstanding. The youngest children in the Nursery enact their own stories. They use their imaginations vividly; for example, children decided that the giant in one version of ‘Jack and the beanstalk’ chases princesses away and eventually eats them!” – Ofsted Report, Kemsley Primary Academy, February 2015

Please visit: to read the full report.


On Thursday 12th February 2015, we awarded the UK’s sixth Helicopter Stories Centre of Excellence award to St Werburgh’s Park Nursery School, Bristol in recognition of their work with Story Square.

St. Werburgh’s Park Nursery School, funded by Bristol City Council since 1931, has a long history of successfully teaching young children. Every member of staff is qualified to work with young children and is passionate about children’s learning.

Helicopter Stories: Letting Imagination Fly is based on the Storytelling and Story Acting curriculum of Vivian Gussin Paley. There are many different approaches that are based on this curriculum and one of them is Story Square. St. Weburgh’s Park Nursery School have been involved with Story Square for many years.

The presentation began with a short 15-minute demonstration of the approach followed by a presentation of the plaque by the MakeBelieve Arts Creative Director, Isla Hill.

“Thank you so much for a truly inspiring day! The day was just what we needed … you lifted us and enabled us once again to focus on Vivian’s work and how it so resonates with our children and families here at St. Werburgh’s.”

— Liz Jenkins, Head Teacher, St. Werburghs Park Nursery School

Stifford Clays Primary School becomes our 5th Helicopter Centre of Excellence

stiffold clays cofe

On Wednesday 28th January 2015 Stifford Clays Primary School in Thurrock was awarded Helicopter Centre of Excellence. They are only the 5th in the UK to be awarded this status and the 1st in Thurrock.

Parents were invited along for the presention from MakeBelieve Arts Creative Director, Isla Hill and Harli Green from Stifford Clays. Isla gave a short presentation on what Helicopter Stories is and how it works then Harli gave some examples of stories their children have been telling and linking them to the EYFS and their development.

This was then followed by a fantastic demonstration of the approach with a few of the Early Years children and their teacher Lynn. It was a great opportunity for the parents to see a live demonstration of Helicopter Stories in action and as the school staff put it ‘put some of the exciting, flamboyant and often bizarre, stories into context.’ The storytelling and story acting demonstration certainly got many laughs and smiles from the parents.

Finally there was the presentation of the plaque where Isla explained what they had done to achieve this award and Harli talked about how thrilled the school are to be a Centre of Excellence.