We have been working with the staff at Blackhorse Primary for 3 years, improving their play provision over this time. We have developed their Forest School provision, Travel Plan solutions, Early Years Play, installed 2 shipping container workshops, a Resource Base playground for children with Autism and most recently a reading room from a converted caravan. Every time the School have come up with a new idea we have been able to provide them with a solution.
At Blackhorse, we try to keep play as natural and close to the environment as possible. We try to provide structures and areas which don't just do one thing but offer a place where children can use their imaginations.
The central philosophy behind our outdoor learning is that the school grounds are an extension of the classrooms and should be designed to support a range of curriculum areas (not just PE).
This philosophy starts in Reception, where the outdoor area allows for the whole indoor curriculum to be duplicated outside so that children have the choice as to where to learn. This area was carefully designed to meet the needs of the EYFS curriculum and Green Play worked closely with the school to ensure that the area achieved our learning goals.
At Blackhorse, Forest School activities are built into the curriculum for all children. So we could ensure that this was delivered well, we invested in an outdoor covered campfire area large enough for a whole class to work in. Likewise, when we decided to offer engineering activities, we wanted a space dedicated to this, so installed an 'engineering workshop' where all the tools and equipment could properly be stored and the children could work on the go-kart which is being built in the workshop.
Green Play Project understands our school's vision for play and learning and is integral in helping us turn our curriculum and play goals into a reality.
Simon Botten, Head Teacher