National Cricket Week Day 1: Jesse Gray School

England cricketer Chris Woakes visited Jesse Gray Primary School in Nottingham inspiring the pupils to take up the sport on behalf of national cricket charity Chance to Shine. Woakes delivered a special geography lesson that integrated cricket with learning to engage the pupils as part of Yorkshire Tea National Cricket Week.

The lesson looked at the different countries across the world that play cricket and taught the children about the countries and their cultures. The children then had to plot the countries on a world map before taking part in some active learning, getting up and about ‘visiting’ the different countries and learning more about them.

Woakes then headed out onto the playground for a special cricket coaching session with the students, giving them top tips on the sport as well as talking about his own experiences of playing cricket at the top level.

Speaking at the event Woakes said “I’ve had a brilliant day back at school as part of Yorkshire Tea National Cricket Week. It was great to spend some time with the kids, to get them involved in cricket and to play out here in the sunshine today.

“I think my teaching skills probably need some work! Geography isn’t necessarily my strong suit but I really enjoyed being in the classroom with the kids and just spending some time with them and they were very polite and a real joy to spend some time with.”

Caitlin, 7, loved meeting an England player, saying, “When I tell my parents about Chris coming to our school, they’re going to be amazed and will want to be a child again so they could do it!”

Maisie, 7, thinks it’s very important that girls have the same opportunities to play cricket as boys, “Because if boys just play cricket not everyone is having fun. If you want everyone to be part of your game then you need to teach them, they need to know.”

Chance to Shine is a national cricket charity that aims to give all children the opportunity to play and learn through cricket. They deliver coaching sessions in 1 in 5 primary schools across the country, teaching children life skills like communication, teamwork and respect through the sport.

Into its fifth year, Yorkshire Tea National Cricket Week is a celebration of cricket that sees around 1,500 schools take part and this year runs from 18 – 22 June. Chance to Shine and Yorkshire Tea work together to inspire thousands of children across the country to take part in cricketing activity in the classroom and on the playground.

This summer, donations to Chance to Shine are being matched £ for £ by charity Patron Adrian Beecroft. Donate now at

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