Beeston Primary, Leeds United, San Francisco 49ers and Patrick Bamford land educational touchdown

STAR GUEST: Patrick Bamford with pupils from Beeston Primary School on Leeds United's famous Elland Road pitch.
STAR GUEST: Patrick Bamford with pupils from Beeston Primary School on Leeds United's famous Elland Road pitch.
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PHYSICS became fun for pupils at Beeston Primary School who touched down at Elland Road for a sports-themed lesson as part of Leeds United’s partnership with the San Francisco 49ers.

The investment arm of the American football giants became a minority shareholder in United back in May and Leeds is now reaping the rewards on and off the pitch.

As well as providing investment to United’s first team, the 49ers and their owners have long held a commitment to use their sport and standing to help with education.

Working with Leeds, 49ers EDU Academy director Jesse Lovejoy subsequently conducted sports-themed lessons at Beeston Primary on Thursday before pupils were taken to Elland Road for a physics session explaining the four flights of an American football.

The Elland Road classroom was then treated to a guest appearance from the club’s £7m striker Patrick Bamford who then joined the youngsters on the club’s famous pitch.

Lovejoy explained: “We had a geography lesson about where San Francisco is, why the team is named the 49ers, how we got our name and how many people live in California, all those fun things.

“Then we did a session about engineering and I had some volunteers wear a jersey from 1960 and one from 2018 and talk about how material, science and engineering has made it possible for jerseys to be lighter, more breathable and more comfortable for players, all things that equate to better game play.

“The whole point is to try and get kids to think about these subjects in a more approachable and interesting way.”

Beth Tidey, Beeston Primary School’s deputy teacher said: “We are so close to Elland Road that we walked here and it was brilliant to see the children’s faces light up as they arrived inside the stadium, some of them for the first time. To be part of this amazing project, it’s brilliant.

“It’s about the excitement for learning and something practical like this where the children come out of school and out of the classroom to learn in their own community is amazing.”

Bamford - who himself gained a GCSE A* in physics - said: “When kids are rebelling against education, sometimes they think it’s not important and they’d rather be playing Play Station or out playing with their friends. Homework can be neglected.

“But if someone wants to be a footballer and they see a footballer sending a message they might listen. Anything you can do to help is worth it.”