"There is no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather."John Ruskin
Outdoor Learning is a key feature of the curriculum offer at The Spinney Primary School.
Through learning outdoors, children have the opportunity to develop and practise a range of important behaviours, attitudes and skills. These include communication, resilience, social interaction, self-agency and managing risk. In addition, through outdoor learning opportunities children acquire fine and gross motor skills and learn about sequencing and ordering. These are fundamental building blocks which support the learning that takes place in the classroom.
As well as developing learning skills from being outdoors, children also learn about sustainability, ecology and wildlife conservation. The Spinney offers:
As with every learning opportunity, the school is thoughtful about risk reduction and risk management. Just as within the classrooms there are hazards to be managed. The school has a Site Risk Management and Trip and Slip Policy as well as a Wild Wood Risk Assessment.
Where possible the children will have access to the outdoors every day either as part of play times or for curriculum activities. For this reason it is important that your child has the right clothing and kit for the activities on offer, for example PE kits, indoor shoes, wellington boots, raincoats.
At The Spinney we say "There is no such thing as bad weather, only the wrong clothes!"
Cambridge Curiosity and Imagination (CCI)
The school has been working with Cambridge Curiosity and Imagination, a creative organisation that explores intriguing places and allows people to discover the power of imagination and curiosity.
Our Foundation class has taken the lead in discovering this space, spending one morning a week in spring term last year out in the woodland, accompanied by their teacher, teaching assistants and CCI creative practitioner Deb Wilenski, furthering their investigations through creative explorations back in the classroom in the afternoons. This programme of discovery led to the completion of Arts Award Discover for the whole class! This short film shares some of our discoveries:
"I am sure you recall our brief conversation a few days ago at the Spinney school gate. I complimented and thanked you and your team on the thinking behind and the commissioning of the timber playful and stimulating sculptures that seem to have miraculously and delightfully appeared one day on the school field.
They are stimulating on many levels, intellectually, visually, emotionally, physically, and this may be why their presence is so powerful, and so timely with the Wild Wood project that has been so successful last year. These sculptures are an ideal embodiment of how we can interact creatively and sustainably with our natural environment, an inspiring example of up-cycling for our children. They are so lucky to be part of such a stimulating school environment.
I, together with many other parents, revelled at this beautiful timber installation that will no doubt age gracefully with time and become even more rooted in its setting."