A Challenging Trim Trail For All Age Groups
Our South Eastern Playground Consultant, Rachel Westbury, worked with Goat Lees Primary School to install playground equipment that was engaging and challenging for the entire school.
The school wanted an active challenge for all age groups with different levels of difficulty.
Taking these ideas on board, we created an energetic Trim Trail consisting of challenging equipment, placed in such a way that it becomes progressively harder as the children traverse across the resource.
The Goat Lees’ Trim Trail
The school’s new trim trail includes the following obstacles to challenge all age groups at the school:
- Twist Net
- Swinging Log Traverse
- Mini Balance Beam
- Rope Swing Traverse
- Stepping Logs
- Single-Sided Timber Climbing Wall
- Mini Balance Beam
- Net Traverse
- Inclined Balance Beam
- Climbing Poles
The children have found the new equipment more challenging than the school initially thought, particularly the climbing wall which is fantastic for their continual development.
Not only has the trim trail enhanced the children’s key physical skill and developed their fine and gross motor skills, it has also enhanced their creativity and imaginative play as they challenge themselves to cross the trail without touching the ground or with only one foot and one hand.
To ensure the children can access the trail in all weathers and take safe risks confidently, we used Artificial Grass Surfacing with an impact layer underneath.
We also created an artificial grass pathway from the playground to the trail to reduce muddy footprints back in the classroom.
Rachel revisited the school and took time to interview Adam Harlow who is the PE lead and Year 3 teacher.
Here is a wonderful transcript of their interview:
Rachel: We’ve got Mr Harlow here from Goat Lees Primary School, we’re talking about their new trim trail. So, Mr harlow, tell us about what your project objectives were and why you wanted your new trim trail installed.
Adam: So our objectives were to have a piece of equipment that was engaging for the entire school all the way from our reception class up to our year 6 class with various challenges and difficulties to just increase that engagement with all of our children being a bit more active.
Rachel: Fantastic, and do you think this has done that?
Adam: Definitely, we’ve had a lot of challenges going on it and it’s interesting to see how different it is between our young ones using it and how the older ones use it to challenge themselves. Just using it in ways we hadn’t expected them to. So, we have had an increase in engagement with the children using it, which has been lovely.
Rachel: Amazing, so they’ve been really creative and have found ways to make it more challenging for themselves?
Adam: Yeah, the overall excitement at first was let’s just use it and go for it. And then as they’ve had it a bit longer and they’ve got used to it they’ve started to challenge themselves. Like ‘can you do this bit without jumping, or you’re not allowed to touch the floor, you can only use one foot and one hand’. So just challenging themselves and making it a bit of fun between them, it’s been really nice to see
Rachel: Brilliant, a few of them have said the climbing wall has been the toughest bit, have they been tempted to cheat along the wooden bit?
Adam: Oh they cheat along it a lot so we’ve brought in a rule, and had a big assembly about no cheating on it. We’ve also got a leader board on display about who can do it the longest without touching the timber or the floor. It’s about them challenging themselves and getting really engaged in it which has been really nice to see.
Rachel: So it’s not too easy for them?
Adam: No, definitely not, they’ve found it really hard which is good to see as we have a lot of pupils here who lack fine motor skills and gross motor skills.
Rachel: Amazing, so, that’s really good to hear, how have you found your experience with Pentagon?
Adam: It’s been good from our initial contact to coming for visits, it’s all been really clear. We knew when you were coming and you turn up and it’s been warm and welcoming. Everyone’s been really kind and helpful. Its made a stressful job a lot easier and has been so simple, its been really nice.
Rachel: Awe that’s great to hear, it can be really stressful when you’re trying to get a project off the ground.
Adam: Yes, especially with everything else you have going on in the school. It’s nice when someone can come in and help you develop the ideas you have and it starts out and it isn’t something that we’ve ended up with - it’s been something that is so much better. It’s nice when someone can come in with those visions who can see your goal and see what you want and how to develop that and get the best for you and your school.
Rachel: So would you recommend us?
Adam: Definitely, I already have. We’ve gone to meetings and have sat next to other people who have been headteachers and explained to them how good our experience has been with Pentagon.
If you are looking for someone to develop your ideas and work with you to create an engaging, active play area for the children at your school, feel free to Contact Us. Alternatively, you can view our full range of Trim Trail Equipment and Active Play Equipment.