outstanding outdoor spaces

Dog Kennel Hill Primary School, London

The children at Dog Kennel Hill Primary School are enjoying climbing, investigating, learning and playing in their new playground.

Why did you want to develop your playground?

We weren’t making the best use of the space we had available at Dog Kennel Hill Primary School and wanted to introduce new playground equipment that would encourage more physical play and development.

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

Playforce really listened to what we wanted from the start. They always checked plans with us and encouraged the staff and pupils to get involved in the ideas process. Their plans matched what we had in mind perfectly and they extended them to make a fantastic playground.
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The children now have daily access to equipment where they can challenge and develop their physical skills. They have use of an area all year round, that previously wasn’t accessible when it was raining or cold, and the floor markings offer them a change to learn the alphabet in a fun way.

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

Now that we have static areas, we don’t have to waste time setting up play equipment every day. These areas have sparked imagination in the children and they challenge and develop a broad range of skills. The equipment allows the pupils to challenge themselves at their own pace.

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

The children now have daily access to equipment where they can challenge and develop their physical skills. They have use of an area all year round, that previously wasn’t accessible when it was raining or cold, and the floor markings offer them a change to learn the alphabet in a fun way. The tunnel and tipi offer shade and shelter when it’s warm and have encouraged imaginative development. The sand pit and house are very popular and the children are developing better technology and investigative skills.

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

It comes naturally to children to get outside and run, roll and climb. A fun, challenging playground allows them to do this every day. Let the parents know what their children are playing, they love the fact that they have access to these things daily.
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