Janice Taberner, Headteacher St Benedict’s, Hindley, Wigan (Outstanding OFSTED report) :

'Mike has been into St Benedict’s on a number of occasions working with groups and whole classes on problem solving and team development exercises. The children and staff gained a great deal from the programme including perseverance, working as a team, logical thinking as well as having a great time. We had Ofsted during Mike’s last visit and it went a long way to securing our Outstanding Behaviour grade as they could see the children working together and collaborating in teams. I would highly recommend Mike working in your schools – he is very professional and has a great rapport with staff and children.'

Gwen Owen, Head of Year 9 and PE teacher, Ysgol Uwchradd Caergybi / Holyhead High School, Wales :

'Ysgol Uwchradd Caergybi have worked with Open Minds recently and are delighted with the work carried out so far. Our aim was to work with challenging pupils and take them out of their comfort zone to over come social hurdles like teamwork, cooperation. As a school we were fully informed prior to visit and were able to have an input to the delivery of the workshop also. I would highly recommend working with Open Minds.'

Tom Judd, Middleton Tyas CE Primary, Richmond, N. Yorks :

'As a teacher, it is also very useful to have the opportunity to observe the children doing the activities and how they interact. Instructions are clear, the children are often hands-on in an activity very quickly and there’s great pace between activities. Often the sessions highlight teaching points which can be developed back in the class. It is always helpful to reference the sessions with Mike. This week he said ‘It’s not always about your idea, sometimes you have to give it up and follow someone else’s’. The delivery is excellent. Plans are provided but flexibility is also evident depending on the needs of the day. Mike is always in control and the children show a high level of respect; he has built up a good reputation and relationship over a short period of time. Children tend to be much better at taking turns and listening to each other’s opinions after teambuilding sessions. Mike is always happy to discuss the sessions and gives good feedback, often sharing ideas for after he has gone. I would definitely recommend Open Minds to other schools as the children are always engaged and enjoy the sessions. The activities are always tailored to our children. Overall the sessions give children skills which they can continue to use in class and life.'

Debbie Parkinson, Education Development Officer, Citizenship and Healthy Schools, Wigan Council :

'Michael prepares sessions in great detail and has a good affinity with the groups of young people with which he works. Sessions are fun and young people enjoy them. Learning takes place in line with elements of the National Curriculum and enhances PSHE and Citizenship Education.'

Miss Diamond, Y2 teacher, Ysgol Bryn Deva, Connah's Quay, Wales :

'It was beneficial for me to observe the children taking part in activities. It was interesting watching the dynamics of the group and observing how they work with children that they may not always work with.'

Julia McCrory, Y4 Teacher, Leigh Sacred Heart Primary, Lancashire :

'Was initially apprehensive but Mike put us at ease and the activities were fine. Particularly enjoyed the water activity - nothing like water running into your shoe and along your sleeve of your sweater to help you relax and laugh!!'

Christine Rodgers, Deputy Headteacher and Y5 teacher, Ysgol Bryn Hedydd, Rhyl, Wales :

'Good clear structure and activities, interesting and challenging. Particularly good to see that you are firmly in charge of irritating behaviours. Important that the students realise the importance of listening and when they have been told to follow a simple instruction. Very worthwhile.'

Dee Bartholomew, HLTA, Ysgol Bryn Hedydd, Rhyl, Wales :

'What a fabulous afternoon Y5 have had. A real opportunity to look at how we are around others and to learn form others. As a member of staff I could see how the stronger characters can dominate a task and how others relate to that character. Also it was good to see otherwise quieter pupils having an opportunity to have a say. An excellent and min opening afternoon!'

Y5 pupil, Ysgol Bryn Hedydd, Rhyl, Wales :

'A good team will listen to each other's ideas and be kind to each other and not argue. Today I learnt that when you listen to each other's ideas you get along more. It is good to listen to others because they might have a very good idea.'

Christine Nash, Reception and PSHE+C Co-ordinator, St Johns Primary, Pemberton, Lancashire :

'I was a little dubious at first about involvement for Reception but the session was brilliant as all children were kept active and involved. We will follow up main ideas in class - of helping/listening to each other and teamwork.'

Huw T. Jones, Ysgol Bryn Deva, Connah's Quay, Wales :

'Michael has worked with our KS2 children - providing them with useful and highly effective team building sessions. Open Minds training sessions are now embedded into our annual timetable. Highly recommended!'

Howard King, Y6 teacher, Shadsworth Primary, Blackburn:

'Session raised many issues regarding 'cohesion' or lack of it that has developed throughout the years. All tasks set could be re-used later in term or adapted for other year groups. Incidents occurring at latter end of session were dealt with sensitively and appropriately. A great afternoon and would be interested in arranging more sessions in the future!'

Y6 pupil, Shadsworth Primary, Blackburn:

'I think today was marvelous. I loved it so much I would like to do it again.'