A Place to Play, Explore and Investigate at St Peter’s CE Primary School
We were eager to work with the Early Years teaching team at St Peter’s CE Primary School in Heswall.
Playground consultant, Ian Wood, met with Early Years lead teacher, Emma Birmingham, to discuss the transformation of the early year's outdoor area. The team wanted to completely redesign the space, allowing pupils to learn outside during all seasons. An exciting, new design would encompass all 7 areas of learning and development.
At the planning stage, careful consideration was given to creating different learning zones that would target specific skills. Every inch of available space was maximized to create a stimulating, creative, garden of discovery for the smallest learners to enjoy.
St Peter’s chose our popular artificial grass playturf which is the ideal base for active play. It is soft and comfortable to sit on yet durable and hard-wearing. Learners can make full use of the outdoor environment during all seasons as the grass is porous and free draining.
In the active section of the playground, we created a beige Wetpour track for pupils to race around on trikes and scooters.
Our Pinnacle Hill Climber stands proudly in the centre of this zone, encouraging children to develop their gross motor skills and strength. This particular climber is an ideal introduction to climbing for young pupils, allowing them to develop imaginative games at a safe height whilst strengthening their core muscles.
Let’s Get Messy!
The lucky learners at St Peter’s now have a section of their playground where messy play is embraced! After some careful planning, we decided to use garden sleepers to create a huge dig pit where mud pies are certainly on the menu!
The new ‘Muddy Cafe’ contains a large Mud Kitchen where many children can scoop, mix and create. Designs and menus can be formulated on the Giant Chalkboard and materials can be transported thanks to the Rope and Pulley Materials Mover.
Pupils will begin to learn about forces and mechanisms as they work together to solve problems.
The addition of a Wigwam provides a secluded area of calm in the new space. Children can share their favourite texts whilst extending their vocabulary.
A Freestanding Storytelling Chair is a wonderful place to gather together to be transported to another world. The young learners at St Peter’s have certainly enjoyed taking turns to tell a story which is fantastic for developing confidence in speaking and listening skills.
A Performance Stage with Den Posts is a favourite spot to put on performances, gather together to sing, prepare for the school play or to practise perfect phonics. The addition of the den posts allows the area to be transformed by creating different backdrops or perhaps a tent or a cave!
Investigate and Create
A Water Wall with Water Play Package allows children to design and build their own course for water to run down. Collaborative working and problem solving is strongly encouraged as children experiment whilst pouring and splashing.
Our Interactive Paint Panel has wheels therefore it can be moved indoors and outdoors for different groups of children to engage with. It can be used with a variety of different mediums and pupils really enjoy creating portraits of their friends!
Both pupils and staff are overjoyed with the transformation of their outdoor area which now fully supports a play-based curriculum. Pupils can safely choose which of the different zones to explore whilst developing confidence and resilience.
If you are looking to develop your outdoor area, please get in contact with us here to start your journey with Pentagon Play.