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Outdoor Learning

Summer Term- this term we have practised our den building and fire lighting skills in our Muddy Monsters sessions. We have also utilised our link with the Friends of Saltwell Park to take part in some fantastic workshops. Our Reception children had a great day working alongside the bee keepers to learn all about the bees in the park. Our Year One children were lucky enough to work with a bird expert to develop their knowledge of birds which inhabit the park. We have been on many school trips to enhance our curriculum- have a look at our pictures below and our class pages to see more!

Spring Term- What a very busy term we have had. We have focused on fire lighting and some tool work. We have also had some great visits out to ensure we have a broad and balanced curriculum.

Autumn two has been packed full of super learning opportunities. Our muddy monsters sessions have been in full swing with a focus on den building and knots. We have also loved learning outside the classroom and have really enjoyed utilising our link with the friends of Saltwell Park. Our year 5/6 have learned all about the sculptures in the park from one of the brilliant volunteers. Our school choir also performed at Arbour Day in the park, they were amazing! We can’t wait for our next sessions with the friends of Saltwell Park.

We are beginning our Autumn term with some super team building opportunities. We have also loved practising and refining some of our previously taught skills.

Our Philosophy:

At Brighton Avenue Primary School we aim to encourage and inspire children through positive outdoor experiences using the Forest School approach and ethos. The Forest School ethos encompasses practical activities in the natural environment designed to promote the development of self esteem and emotional intelligence leading to improved self confidence. This powerful approach also supports young children to become self-motivated, gain confidence when managing risks and develop social skills. We provide opportunities for children to acquire new skills when they are ready for them. These activities will maintain a degree of challenge and excitement, whilst remaining safe and controlled. There are many important issues to be considered and we aim to remain true to the Forest School ethos and approach. Research shows that; ‘Pupils who take part in a creative curriculum behave better, they enjoy school more, become more confident and improve communication skills and levels of attainment’. Creativity, Culture and Education 2011. 


Principles of Teaching Forest school:

  • To stimulate the children’s interest in the natural environment as well as other curriculum areas.
  • To help develop an understanding of ideas learnt in the classroom.
  • To help develop team-building and communication skills.
  • To develop problem solving skills.
  • To provide an opportunity for individuals to develop, to learn and to enjoy themselves.
  • To provide a safe and non-threatening environment in which children can take risks, make choices and initiate their own learning.
  • To help children understand, appreciate and care for the natural environment.
  • To provide ways of developing practical life skills in an outdoor environment.
  • To develop self-esteem, confidence and a positive disposition to learning through the completion of small, achievable tasks.
  • To provide stimulation and varied learning activities appropriate to the child’s needs and stages of development.

Outdoor Learning Policy 2023-2024

Summer Term- what an amazing summer term we have had. We have loved our Muddy Monsters sessions which have had a huge focus on knot work and den building skills. We have also been out and about in our locality. The older children have visited Big Local Allotment to help plant and maintain it. There has been lots of trips taking place too- what a busy but amazing term!

Spring has been such a busy term. We have continued our Muddy Monsters sessions. These have involved lots of fire work, cooking, tool work and team work! We have also been lucky enough to be part of a project ran by the Natural History society. The project is called a Plan for Nature which aims to develop children’s connectedness to nature and develop a love for the outdoors. Children have spoken extremely positively about this. Finally as part of our link with Big Local some of our year three children were invited to take part in an art project to create a canopy for the decking area in the allotment. The children are half way through the project and we can't wait to see the final product!

Outdoor Learning quotes: 

‘I love that we are trusted to use tools- tool work is the best’. 

‘Being in the outdoors is great-it makes me happy and it’s always fun’. 

‘I made a stretcher that could actually lift someone up’. 


‘We got so dirty jumping in muddy puddles’. 

‘It’s the best place-it’s my favourite place!’


‘We made our own swing and it worked! I loved it’. 

Autumn 2 half-term we have been very busy. Lots of den building and team work. We love Outdoor Learning!

This half-term.......

National Trust are offering a free visit out this Autumn- click the link below to find out more!

Autumn 2022

We've kicked off Autumn term with lots of super outdoor learning opportunities! We've loved our outdoor learning sessions which have included orienteering, fire skills, tool work and knot skills in our den building creations! We have also had some trips out. Year Two have been to the Big Local Allotment to help harvest the vegetables and Year 1 were lucky enough to visit a brand new forest school site and have a session lead by Stomping Grounds. We have all learned so much and have had great fun along the way!

Summer Term

This term we have loved being outdoors. In Early Years and Key Stage One we have enjoyed looking for mini-beast, exploring growth and change and learning through our own play and interests in Forest School. In Key Stage Two we have taken part of lots of den building activities, learning about different knots and applying these through our den building activities. We have also had trips to the Big Local Allotment across all Key Stages which has been great to learn about planting and growing!

'My favourite part of Outdoor Learning this term was building and presenting our own den to our friends. I managed to do some knots on my own.'


'I found a ladybird-it was really exciting.'


'I really love it when Phil comes in to work with us-I love being outside'. 


'We made muddy puddles with lots of water- it was squishy mud'. 


'It was great the the Big Local allotment- we weeded, planted and learned about things we could grow at home'. 

Spring 2022

This term we have spent time developing our new skills which are centred around tool work, den building and fire skills. We have had great fun and have loved all of the managed risk- developing our life skills! Have a look at what we have been up to and also check out our class pages! What a fabulous term!

Autumn 2021

We have started our Autumn Term with a super visit to Big Local Allotment for Year 6 and Year 5/6. This is an amazing link we have within our local community! The children helped plant, tidy and weed the area. We usually do this with the local care home residents however this is still restricted at the moment- we look forward to having them back working alongside us! We have lots more outdoor learning taking part this half-term so watch this space....


Muddy Monsters

We have been so lucky to have muddy monsters into work with us this half-term. We have learned lots and had lots of fun! Have a look at what we have been up to.....

Summer 2021

Since returning from lockdown in March, we have been working hard once again to develop our outdoor learning space whilst building links with our local community. We are very lucky that we have been asked by the Shipley Art Gallery to help them develop their garden space. We have lots of sessions booked in for September with many of our classes. We started off the project with our Year 4&5 children visiting the Shipley Art Gallery and they were lucky enough to make some bird boxes for our outdoor area. Again, this is all to help attract a range of wildlife. 


We have been busy restocking our mini-beat house and have planted some wild meadow seeds. It has been great this summer to watch all of the new wildlife come to our outdoor area. So far we have had: bees, lots of minibeasts such as woodlice, worms, caterpillars, butterflies, centipedes, snails, slugs and more! We have also had lots more birds. Our aim next year is to develop a small pond area and hopefully attract some frogs! 


Here is a small selection of photographs showing our year 4 and 5 children at the Shipley Art Gallery creating their own bird boxes. Don't they look fabulous...... 



During our pupil voice session, a range of children from years 1-6 spent time thinking about how we could attract wildlife into our outdoor space. The children decided to go away from the session and research some ideas. They came back to me very excited and with some super plans. We are going to start ASAP and put these plans into action!
To try and attract wildlife to our Outdoor Area and help with Riley's cause, Year One have been making bird feeders. Lee, our brilliant site manager, has made us our own bird feeding station. We can't wait to see which birds we attract to our area! Watch this space!

We have received a fabulous letter from one of our children. After watching David Attenborough on Netflix, he has been insoired to do something to help save our planet. This is someting we are going to look at as a school so watch this space........

Outdoor Learning 2020

We have been really hard to improve our Outdoor Learning area. We have been planting, painting and best of all playing in it! We have had so much fun and we are so proud of what we've achieved so far!!