At Petts Hill we value the importance of play and the unique skill development and learning opportunities it provides. We have been developing the quality and range of play opportunities at Petts Hill since starting work with OPAL (Outdoor Play and Learning) in March.
In relation to play, our school aims to:
- Aid children’s physical, emotional, social, spiritual and intellectual development.
- Ensure play settings provide a varied, challenging and stimulating environment.
- Provide a range of environments that will support children’s learning across the curriculum and learning about the world around them.
- Promote independence and teamwork within children.
- Build emotional and physical resilience.
- Provide a range of environments that will encourage children to explore and play imaginatively and develop their creativity.
- Support children in showing compassion and understanding through their play and interactions with each other in a variety of contexts.
- Allow children to take risks and use a common-sense approach to the management of these risks and their benefits, thus developing their courage.
- Enable children to develop respect for their surroundings and each other.
- Provide opportunities for children to develop their relationships within peer groups, with individuals, and within groups of different ages, abilities, interests, genders, ethnicities and cultures, thus deepening our sense of community.
Since starting the project we have opened up more space to the children at break and lunchtimes and allowed greater mixing of year groups. The range of resources we have outside has been increased to inspire children to engage in a wider variety of play types.
We have recently introduced ‘Loose Parts’ to the playground which is as assortment of natural and manmade objects and materials, which the children are free to explore and play with in any way they choose. Adults and children alike have been enjoying exploring these.
For more information, see our Play Policy or speak to one of our OPAL working Group
Follow our Facebook page to see insights into school life, including developments in play. Watch out for more information, donation requests and invitations to parents sessions via Parentmail.