WE LOVE TO LEARN OUTSIDE!
At Holy Family Catholic Primary School we aim to offer our children the experiences of outdoor education as a tool to develop their skills both academically and holistically. Research shows that outdoor education and children’s access to nature positively improves self-esteem, physical health, development of language skills and their disposition to learning . At Holy Family we aspire to engage children in exciting, stimulating and purposeful learning by using our school grounds, as a tool for teaching and learning through hands on experiences.
Every child in school has an entitlement to high quality outdoor learning throughout the whole year and every class aims to take learning outside for one day per week . As well as learning about the outdoor environment, our children are given opportunities to develop their curriculum knowledge and skills across a wide range of subjects.
There are no boundaries to outdoor learning within the EYFS, outdoor learning is an integral part of our day. Children have free access to our outdoor area throughout the day, with a range of free flow and planned activities. Children can choose from a wide range of resources including a mud kitchen, large construction, and a small garden. Once a week the children explore the wider school grounds and are able to learn about concepts such as changing seasons and local plants and wildlife through practical hands on experiences.
In KS1 opportunities to take learning outside are seized and taken full advantage of. KS1 have access to our large outdoor area which includes a bug hotel area, planting beds, and a willow house. Outdoor learning is linked to all curriculum areas and activities may include gathering and using natural resources for Mathematics, using chalk to practice Phonics sounds on the playground and making fairy houses for the character in their whole class text. Every Summer Term, KS1 also take part in our annual garden competition, which includes the children planting and tending to their own gardens.
As our children move into KS2 they continue to access the outdoors on a weekly basis, with activities linked to their learning across a variety of subjects. Activities may include making potions to explore capacity, using natural materials to investigate fractions, and acting out key texts from their Literacy lessons in the great outdoors. KS2 children also have access to the school field, an outdoor gym and in the summer months have the chance to attend a Gardening Club. The children are also given numerous opportunities to develop outdoor skills and knowledge through various educational visits throughout the year.