outstanding outdoor spaces

Cornerstone Nursery, London

Sandra Hunt, the Nursery Manager at Cornerstone Day Nursery and Pre School in Lewisham, tells us how their transformed outdoor area has been a big hit, enabling the children to become more creative.

Why did you want to develop your playground?

The outdoor area that we had to use before our development was not really a suitable area for our children to play on. We had a gravel drive way which caused concern with lots of our younger children slipping and falling over. The grass area that we did have access to was being churned up constantly by the wheeled toys when it got wet and so wasn’t best suited to outdoor play every day, particularly in wetter weather.

What were the key elements that made Playforce stand out from other providers?

We were impressed by the simple robustness and high quality of the materials used. We knew that our investment would last, even with daily use. The excellent rapport that was created with our Playforce consultant was very important, and our ideas and views were listened to and taken in to account. We felt confident that Playforce would provide the service and quality our children deserve – and they did!
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The children are able to spend much more time in the outside environment, making up their own games with the fixed equipment, particularly in the Tipi, which they love.

How are we using the space to deliver outdoor learning & educational play?

By having a secure “free flow” area we can set up and leave equipment outside for use at any time. This means that the children can continue and develop their games over a number of days and they are always able to get some fresh air. We are planning to purchase a “Poddely” Set in the near future to further enrich the children’s outdoor learning.

What are the biggest benefits you have seen for the children?

The children are able to spend much more time in the outside environment, making up their own games with the fixed equipment, particularly in the Tipi, which they love. Due to the Coloured Play Fencing, the children have the freedom to run around and explore the play area safely. They are also enjoying the concept of planting and growing in the Fun Grow Planter Beds.

Can you share any best practice insights you’ve gained?

The children are becoming more creative and imaginative in their outside play due to their structured outdoor area. When they come back inside the children seem more focused and can settle quickly, having let off some steam playing freely. Our Rectangular Shelter and All Weather Play Lawn surfacing will ensure that the children are able to take advantage of this whatever the weather!

“When they come back inside the children seem more focused and can settle quickly, having let off some steam playing freely.”
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