"Pupils appreciate the extensive grounds and outdoor learning environment. One enthusiastic pupil said, ‘The outdoor classroom is the best. We learn a lot about science and nature out there!’"
OFSTED REPORT 2017
Despite our rapidly expanding school, we continue to deliver a rich, high quality science and outdoor learning curriculum to every pupil. This year the Outdoor Classroom lessons will be organised as follows:
Mr Elwood will continue in his role as Science and Outdoor Classroom leader. Mrs Portus is partially retiring but will plan and teach all Year 5 and 6 lessons, ably assisted as always by the green-fingered Mrs Heath. Mr Brown will plan and teach all KS1 lessons as well as Years 3 and 4. Mrs Wakeham will be assisting him with Year 1 lessons and Mrs Heath with the rest. Mrs Portus and Mr Brown will work closely together to ensure consistent quality, progression and continuity of learning throughout the school. Mrs Heath will work with Mrs Wakeham to share best practise in the garden. The Year 1 garden now has a small polytunnel as well as raised beds and is in effect a miniature version of our main garden and an ideal introduction for young gardeners.
Please feel free at any time to visit our Outdoor Classroom building (which lies adjacent to the staff car park and next to Breakfast and After School Club) for a guided tour.
What to wear for Outdoor Classroom lessons
We like to spend as much time outside as possible but it is not necessary to wear clothing other than school uniform unless specifically requested. HOWEVER ... it is important to make sure you have suitable footwear. Stout shoes or trainers are ideal. Wellies are not needed (though you can bring them if you wish) but comfort and safety in the garden is important and lightweight shoes (particularly for the girls) offer little protection and children get wet socks and cold feet. Don't forget to bring a warm, waterproof coat and in cold weather a hat and gloves are recommended. Scarves however tend to get in the way. Remember, there is no such thing as poor weather - only poor clothing!
Jim Collins - volunteer extraordinaire - continues to work tirelessly with Mrs Portus and Mrs Heath to bring a unique garden design experience to one lucky class. You can't have failed to notice the high quality of our planters and hanging baskets and the beauty of the long bed that inspires children year after year. What you may not realise is that every single plant has been grown and cared for by the children, either from seed or from cuttings. Plants grown to sell by the children have raised over £200 this year - a magnificent effort. Thank you to all who have supported our pop-up garden stall in the parent waiting area. And thank you Jim for your continued support.
Each year Jim presents awards to children who have shown talent and commitment. This year Martha Harnett and Tommy Arnold were our winners, both from Kestrels. Liam Compton, one of last year's winners, presented them with their trophy, certificate and garden vouchers.