For student-teacher Sophie Neil, The Yard is the dream part-time job!

Sophie is a 21-year-old student from Edinburgh and she is in her fourth year at Dundee University. She joined The Yard’s Sessional Playworker team shortly after arriving in the city.

Having experienced The Yard in Edinburgh during her previous work with a holiday playscheme for children with additional needs, Sophie was delighted to discover that a smaller version of The Yard existed in Dundee. Better still, they were looking for sessional staff just as she arrived to start University. Sophie now combines working during weekend family sessions with school sessions at The Yard and in the schools themselves.

“As a student teacher, working at The Yard is brilliant, and I couldn’t imagine a more rewarding experience to sit alongside my course.

“Yes, we’re there to play with the children, but there’s more to it than that. The Yard is unique in Dundee and the only place where most children and families can completely relax. Parents can be stressed when they first come in, but they instantly switch off when they walk through the door. Similarly, when we go into schools, we add another dimension to the school day. It’s the right of every child to play but something they perhaps struggle with within a mainstream setting.

“The job is a fantastic opportunity to work with children, families and a highly-skilled team, but in a flexible way. We don’t get much ASN training at University, so The Yard is building my confidence and experience. But you don’t have to be a student-teacher! So many people in and around Dundee – regardless of their gender, age, background or qualifications - could add value to what The Yard do and to the lives of some of the most deserving families around the area.”