outstanding outdoor spaces

Templars Infant and Nursery School, Essex

The staff, pupils and parents of Templars Infant and Nursery School can all take advantage of their new multi-purpose outdoor shelter.

Why did you want to develop your playground?

Our playground is one large tarmac space but before we developed it, the area was lacking any zones or shelter. No shade in the playground was resulting in wilting children after lunchtimes, we tried using gazebos but they’d blow away in the wind! We wanted to create a solution that would double up as a shady space for break times and an outdoor classroom for up to 30 children.

 

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

We had quite specific requirements for our development but Playforce were able to help us tick all the right boxes. The prices with Playforce were right and the aesthetically pleasing designs and child friendly construction was just what we were looking for. Playforce has a fantastic reputation and their extensive experience working with schools is evident from the very start.

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Carrying out lessons in the playground keeps both the staff and pupils motivated. The parents have also been benefiting from the shelter, it is a good space for them to watch football matches from!

How are you using the space to deliver outdoor learning and educational play?

Our timber shelter is used as a quiet and restful area. We place books in there at lunchtimes for children to read and this really slows the playground down. The shelter is a place where children can go to relax but it can also double up as an outdoor classroom. This means that we can take some of our lessons outside and add some excitement to the school day.

 

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

The children arrive back from lunchtimes bubbling and excited for the rest of the day – a great improvement. Carrying out lessons in the playground keeps both the staff and pupils motivated. The parents have also been benefiting from the shelter, it is a good space for them to watch football matches from!

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

Outdoor shelters are perfect for providing shelter during playtimes but they can be used in a number of different ways. When installing equipment such as this, think about its possible multi-use purposes and incorporate this into the design.

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