Early Years Playground at Blackhorse Primary School

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.

Simon Botton, Head Teacher

We removed some areas of the block paving in the Reception play area and reused the pavers to edge the new loose material areas. We filled one area with bark strip and one with a small grade pea gravel in order to introduce some loose materials to soften the space and provide different textures for play.

The central area contained a large tree with a platform built around it so we incorporated this into the design and added ways to access the platform.

We supplied some small scale play equipment; a series of water trough play tables, log seats, chalkboards and loose tyres, planks and logs for for messy, creative play.

A multi story play den provides climbing opportunity sand small spaces for role play and den making. The den has a roof of gravel, and we have planted perennials into soil filled car tyres to improve biodiversity.

The Sand Room has 2 interconnecting rooms large enough for a group pf children to play together.

There are simple work tops, shelves and windows filled with coloured perspex that cast different coloured shadows into the space.

It has doors that can be locked to keep inside clean and the walls are made from open palisade slats to allow good air flow and sight lines. It is a free standing item that can be installed any where and filled with 2 more than one loose material.