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Developing the school grounds

(9 Posts)
breward Thu 04-Jun-15 20:06:04

I have been given the task of developing the school grounds to enhance outside learning.

We are a medium size primary (with nursery).

We have a small wooded area, a garden area with bug hotel and raised vegetable beds, a small grassed area and separate EYFS garden with grass, bikes/trikes and climbing frame.

What do you have at your school that the children love/use all the time? What makes a big difference to your teaching and learning?

I don't want to go down the willow dome route if they take years to grow and use up the precious grass area.

Not sure what the budget is so assume money no object! However, I think the Head would prefer lots of small projects rather than a giant trim trail.

breward Sat 06-Jun-15 12:22:19


Ferguson Thu 11-Jun-15 18:25:17

Sorry you have been ignored so long!

I was TA in a school had most of the things you mention. On the playground we had various games and activities painted, by the Playline Design people. Also little wooden shelters, train and boat which the children liked and made good use of, but these were more to keep them occupied at play times; they could also stimulate topics for stories, and be 'measured' in numeracy, drawn in art, and textures could be used for 'brass rubbings'.

Old tyres were used a stepping stones, and there was a balancing course.

The wooded area children called 'the magic garden', and liked seeing ferns and bracken opening, and turning over logs to find bugs.

Sorry can't help more!

PattiODoors Thu 11-Jun-15 18:38:52

Mud kitchen seems v popular for EYFS settings at the moment

breward Thu 11-Jun-15 18:47:20

Thank you for your ideas.

We are thinking of buying some willow wigwams to go in the woods. Anyone found a good company to buy these from?

I saw a lovely idea of an old rowing boat being sunk into the ground for seating at break times or role play.

I wonder about children coming in absolutely filthy after play with a mud kitchen... I would love one!

saadia Thu 11-Jun-15 22:41:55

We have a large sandpit in the Reception outdoor area, which the children love. Also popular is a little hut which can be used as a role-play area. We also have a maze in the playground and tyres embedded upright into a grassy area.

MidniteScribbler Fri 12-Jun-15 07:05:11

Why not get the students involved in developing the area?

We had an area of the school we wanted to develop, and we actually partnered with the local university and their Education faculty. For a semester, they held one of their classes each week at our school, and pairs of the trainee teachers were teamed with a small group of students. Their task was to develop a special place in the school. Some created large scale games (like tic-tac-toe, hopscotch, there's even a giant checkers board, etc) out of recycled materials, one of them turned an old bathtub into a pond, another group did birdfeeders, another mosaicked an old bench to create a sitting area. It was a really good project for the school and I think we're doing it again this year. The students loved it as they got to do something different, and the feedback was that it was a great opportunity for the trainee teachers as well.

Even if you don't team up with the local teachers training program, you could still do this sort of project with classes around the school. The kids love that they were able to have a hand in creating the spaces and loved showing the younger students how to play the games.

Awakeagain Fri 12-Jun-15 14:21:12

Check out cosy, I'm planning on asking to order from there! Loads of great things!
For me it's not about the grounds, we have space and shelters, it's about having the resources to from outside and learn
Appropriate clothing

Discworld101 Fri 12-Jun-15 14:23:48

We have a little wooden theatre, complete with stage, curtains and a chalkboard on the side for children to advertise their plays.

We also have a traversing wall.

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