Anglesey Primary School Outdoor Learning
We are Anglesey Primary School, a large multicultural primary school in Lozells, Birmingham with over 740 pupils including a Nursery and a Speech and Language Base.
We want to transform the playground for some of our youngest pupils into an interactive green outdoor learning space including a forest school. We are associated with various local charities which support safe, green spaces for families, including Aspire and Succeed and The Friends of George’s Park. We want our children to learn about the wonders of science and nature in their own school too. To learn how to take care of their environment, to take responsibility for it and to ensure it flourishes.
During the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns, access to green areas has been limited for our pupils. We want our pupils to have the opportunity to explore the world around them and be involved in the design and construction of this project and be immersed in nature across the year. It will be their green space.
We are aware of rising issues of mental health affecting children, particularly highlighted during the pandemic and this project would enhance pupil’s mental and spiritual health. We have incorporated the use of our garden into our wider curriculum and we would provide after school clubs. It will be a hands-on outdoor learning space with benefits to our pupils including boosting confidence, social skills, communication, motivation, physical skills, problem solving skills, knowledge and understanding and self-esteem from hands on learning. Pupils will have opportunities to work cooperatively and develop further positive attitude to learning following and have control over their environment.
The funding would allow us to create a space for parents to use and develop and train a volunteer parent workforce. We would have planting areas for the community to access and take responsibility for specific areas of the garden, including maintenance. We would utilise the expertise of a Forest School Leader and further use the services of Growing Gains to ensure the pupils get the most out of the space and provide training for staff. All food grown will be harvested and cooked and eaten by pupils and the community, including hosting a special ‘Cook Off’ day.
Our Outdoor Learning space would include a forest school area with fire pit, den building, a digging area (after seeing how motivated the children were when planting trees in our local park), planting areas for vegetables and fruit as well as a variety of other trees and plants, a large construction area, a wildlife pond, bird viewing area and water collection areas to reuse water in the garden. We want to encourage as much wildlife to the space as possible, to broaden our pupil’s knowledge and experiences.
At Anglesey Primary School, we want our pupils to be ‘Inquisitive, Resilient and Independent’ and an outdoor learning space would allow pupils to further implement these values.
Railway sleepers for raised beds
Wood or stumps for seating, mud kitchen, den building, staging, bird houses, bird hide
Stones - large/small
Materials to build pond