We value and support children's play.
- Play is a developmental imperative, essential to both learning and well-being for primary-aged children.
- Child-led activities are important opportunities for children to develop skills such as leadership, planning, initiative, responsibility and strategy,
- Imagination is the foundation for developing problem-solving skills.
At playtimes and lunch times, our children experience a wide variety of play activities, covering everything from big-muscle to imaginative play. As well as climbing trees, swinging on the monkey bars and playing sport, our students ride scooters and bikes, roller-blades and skate-boards - they've even helped build themselves a skate-ramp! Some timber from an old ramp was re-commissioned by the children, who made themselves a billy-cart - the school now has two carts in two different sizes to fit our smaller and bigger children.
During wet lunchtimes, children can be seen getting busy with the school dress-up box. This is a true treasure trove and inspires all kinds of creative play. As well as 'make believe' games, there are many performances of songs, dances and more - the students love to organise such 'events' for themselves! There are also plenty of opportunities for creative construction: building systems, such as lego and mobilo, are also available for use and a big hit with many of the students.
The playground environment is a supportive one, in which adults actively work with the children to promote the development of functional social skills; the school values of kindness, curiosity and resilience are promoted and inclusive play is mandatory. The children play across age-groups and genders: Choice of play is often based on the game that interests them, rather than on who else is playing it, and this in turn helps children develop a network of relationships across the school.
The school is currently working on re-developing its outdoor play-area, with an emphasis on natural forms, materials and planting to create an environment which supports imaginative play. We are also aware of the benefits natural environments confer in terms of holistic well-being and learning; these sorts of surroundings are known to de-stress children and promote mental well-being and cognitive function.