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Walwayne Court

  • Outdoor Learning

    The primary aim of any outdoor learning is to create an opportunity whereby children have the freedom to enjoy the outdoors, whilst learning in a less structured way, albeit purposefully and guided.

    The Walwayne Court Forest area is an ideal opportunity for children to embrace the outdoors and experience a wide range of activities including gardening and forest school.


    The Benefits of Outdoor Learning

    *Enhanced personal and social communication skills.

    *Increased physical health.

    *Enhanced mental and spiritual health.

    *Enhanced sensory, and aesthetic awareness.

    *The ability to assert personal control and increased sensitivity to one's own well-being.


    From bug hotels, bird watching, making nests, to growing seeds, harvesting vegetables, pruning and planting trees, creating wildflower gardens and den building, all providing a breadth of activities and opportunities for children to be outdoors, encouraging free thinking, as well as developing the skills needed to work as part of a group.

    Understanding the seasons and preparing vegetable beds for spring planting, summer growing and autumn harvesting, gardening in the forest area provides children with a direct link to these seasonal changes, and the skills to prepare, plant and grow their own vegetables. From sweetcorn, carrots, tomatoes, courgettes, pumpkins, swedes, potatoes, beetroot, leeks, beans as well as herbs including basil, rosemary, chives and oregano, to picking apples from the orchard, children have the opportunity to see how our food is grown.

    Planting trees around the school and understanding their importance in our environment in terms of providing oxygen, as well as protecting and feeding our wildlife, to the importance of caring and nurturing plants, all these activities allow children the opportunity to care for nature and their immediate surroundings.

    Autumn is our harvest term, allowing the children to understand the various fruits and vegetables grown around the forest area and knowing when and how to pick them. Tasks include maintaining the tomatoes, beans, courgettes and sweetcorn plants in the poly tunnel, as well as the potato plants outside. It is also the time for collecting the seeds from the wild flowers and drying them out ready for planting next year. Each year the children collect the wildflower seeds, then design and create a series of new wild flower beds ready for next year.

    Winter Term will see hedges being cut ready for new growth in the spring for the birds to nest in, as well as a tree planting programme around the school (which will include birch, beech, willow, rowan, maple and oak trees) - a wide variety which will encourage bio-diversity. We will also have the pond area to clear, as well as feeding our vegetable beds ready for the growing season.

    Spring Term is a busy time, where we see seeds being planted for our vegetables and our wildflower beds being completed and planted.

    Summer Term is when we dig up the first potatoes, carrots and beans and then enjoy a well-deserved rest and to draw, paint, write stories, poems and play in the forest area.