Junior School Playground Strategy
As soon as the bell rings for morning interval, Drumley playground is filled with energy. Squeals of delight and laughter mark a break from structured lessons as our youngsters engage in one of the most important tasks of the day – play.
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) recognises play as a fundamental right as research indicates that it directly impacts on a child’s quality of life. At Wellington, we are committed to ensuring every one of our pupils has the opportunity to good quality play time while at school and are delighted to announce the launch of our new Drumley Playground Development Project.
In December 2018, we invited representatives from ‘Grounds for Learning’, a company who specialise in outdoor learning to come to the Junior School for a consultation. Matt and Gordon met with teachers, representatives from the PTA, and, most importantly, spent hours talking to Junior School pupils about their playground experiences. Primary 3 classes shared the work they have been doing on designing their ‘perfect playground’ and pupil council reps shared their favourite games and ‘wish lists’. We now have recommendations from GfL and have started to produce a development plan and a new Playground Strategy.
What is play?
“Play is the universal language of childhood”
[Scottish Government Play Strategy for Scotland]
Few, if any, schools in Scotland enjoy the beautiful seaside location Wellington does. We are in a unique position here and lucky to be able to tap in to the natural resources around us for curriculum-based learning. Whether it’s using the outdoor nursery, loose parts garden, getting on to the sand for a castles project or visiting the seafront playpark to investigate forces, the benefits of outdoor learning are already being felt by our pupils. The Playground Development Project will seek to enhance this by accompanying changes to our resources with staff training and professional development.
Over the course of the next 18 months, we will use this section of the website to keep you updated on this exciting project. To help fund new playground resources, the PTA have committed to targeted fundraising in 2019. Please watch this space for opportunities to get involved.
“The experiences children have in early life – and the environments in which they have them – shape their developing brain architecture and strongly affect whether they grow up to be healthy, productive members of society.”
[Harvard University, 2007]
Playground Development Update
Over the course of the last few weeks, the transformation of the Junior School Playground has taken place. The photos below provide the development and building process in stages, with the final photos showing the completed “perfect playground’.
Pupils requested a design similar to a ship, the finished design included interactive features such as a mini rock climbing wall and a stage under one of the trees in the Junior School.
The excitement filled the playground when the transformation was complete and the pupils are ecstatic with their new ‘perfect playground’.
Thank you to the PTA for helping to raise funds for this project through their targeted fundraising efforts!