Learning through play is one of the most important lessons for very young children when they begin their school life. Our Reception children are exploring a new world of adventures together in our purpose-designed newly-opened outdoor play area.
It features distinct areas for art, construction, role play and storytelling, writing, physical development and exercise, gardening, and enjoying fun and learning with sand/water and mud. Head of Early Years development is Assistant Head of School Hannah Cheshire who said the rejuvenated outdoor space was a huge hit with children from when it opened just a few weeks ago.
She said: “We recognise many children prefer to learn outside. We wanted to create an outdoor space where they can develop their skills from all the areas of learning.
“Children can now have rich outdoor space to explore. We are currently planting herbs in our garden area to provide a peaceful sensory experience.
“There is also a mix of construction activities so children can work together to learn creatively in many different ways.
“An important aspect of the play area is that as well as simply loving their exclusive new space at break and lunchtime, the children are making progress socially and academically by using it.”
Local company Living Timber worked with Chilton on the design brief and constructed the area, which also includes a covered learning area, tables and benches where pupils can continue their early attempts at writing, a tepee, house and balance beams, with artificial grass forming part of the surface. Reception group children think it is brilliant. Emily said "I love the new bike track. We go round and then we have parking spaces to park our bikes in. We have to park so other children can have a turn.” Frankie added: “The stage is cool. I like being a superhero on the stage,” while Ryan said his favourite is “the mud kitchen which is so much fun – we make mud pies every day.”