School of Knox

Thanks to all the staff and pupils who helped with the great week on this varied  Outdoor Learning Programme. A fantastic finish to the week with some great conditions for coasteering. Pupils all worked hard on a physically demanding week to guarantee success and we hope to see you all again on future outdoor programmes. Great preperation for the transition to S4 and we wish you all good luck with that.

Slide show has a selection of pictures from the week – unfortunatley we were so busy -stand up paddleboarding, canoeing and kayaking in the wind on Monday that no pictures of that – only memories- hopefully good ones!! Good luck with S4 next week.

King’s of the River Tyne (and Queens)

A massive well done to all the P7 pupils( last group pictured – the entire year group took part!) from King’s Meadow Primary School, Haddington who achieved Paddlpower Start Level 1 over the last month on the River Tyne at West Mill in Haddington. This was a great opportunity for all the pupils to develop their paddling skills.

Of course it’s not all about paddling , we experienced all kinds of Scottish weather over the weeks and developed team skills through learning about paddling canoes and also developed some knowledge about  these amazing craft and the people that paddle them. We made  links to Scottish history (which linked with class topics), geography, our local environment and a few snoozes, duck catching (not real ones!!) and laughs on the way – we even managed to fit in a bit of healthy competition as well as ticking off all the paddlesport start skills.

All the P7 Pupils from King’s Meadow PS received a Paddlepower Start certificate for their achievements – as did Mr Smith (HT) congratulations to all & thanks to all the staff at school and those who got the pupils to venue, helped out with bank support( and more) – and made it all possible.

If you like to get your class to join these padddlesport achievers – why not sign up for the 2013 /14 Primary Outdoor Learning days – more details here.


CPD Staff Development v.2013/14 essential upgrades now available

Outdoor Learning Continuing Professional Development Courses for the 13/14 terms are now available for booking.

Why not get yourself upgraded and sign up on one of the many  East Lothian Council Outdoor Learning Service CPD courses and programmes available to enhance your Outdoor Learning.

As with previous years in 2013/14 there are many opportunities to develop your skills, train for a National Governing Body award or raise your awareness in a variety of Outdoor Learning contexts. These courses  also support the delivery of the curriculum for excellence outdoors.

These CPD courses are all run by qualified Outdoor Learning professionals and will get you confident, qualified and aware of how Outdoor Learning can enhance learning for you, your class pupils, your school or community.

The full range of available courses, and details of how to book can be viewed at the website in the staff development section or you can call the East Lothian Council Outdoor Learning Service (0131 652 5217) for more information.

Amazing Weepans weather the storm at Innerwick

What an amazing week with the “weepans”. It’s been a challenging week of weather, but hey that doesn’t deter the P3 classes from Prestonpans Infant School they were out there getting on with it!

We are fortunate at ELC Outdoor Learning to work with a lot of amazing people across the ELC community (and we see lots of examples of great work) but I just have to emphasise that It has been a great pleasure for our service to work with the pupils and fantastic staff (Special thanks to Susie Graham for coordinating) from Prestonpans Infant School – and here’s why;

Resilience – Something amazing is happening at the weepans! The pupils were very confident, polite supportive of each other, willing to learn and let’s be honest through some difficult weather (a reminder they are only 7 and 8 years old!)  – a huge amount of fun to spend time with. OK I admit as Outdoor Education teachers we have great jobs – but these guys made the difference from a good week to an inspiring week.  It’s not every school that would even consider letting their P3’s out of the school grounds never mind a residential!! (bogus and imaginary H&S reasons are often quoted to us at Outdoor Learning for not going outside.) Boy and girls, teachers and parents– you are a real credit to your school!

Community :  This is with a bold capital C!! The pupils staff and parents are all hugely supportive of getting the P3’s out and on a residential experience, lots of staff involved and of course the pupils reminded me of their sense of pride about themselves, their school and where they live by singing their song – really inspiring (honestly I was moved every time!), boys and girls staff, parents and helpers again you are a real credit to your community (But I’m sure you know that!)

PS: Parents – The cakes were awesome! ( I was allowed one or two)

Partnerships : So many people involved and organisations who gave time, resources and money to make this happen. It’s amazing what the school have achieved here by funding this from a variety of organisations ( Included Public & Private) which meant no cost to the pupils – Lets remind ourselves here of the success– every single P3 pupil signed up! Again well done- a real credit to the community – This is Community Planning actually working not just written down! And it makes a real difference to peoples lives!!

Communication : Edubuzz – Thanks so much to the team who manage this service this has allowed the pupils, staff and parents to keep in touch throughout the whole experience – a real community website approach and a hugely valuable service to schools and community that deserves more recognition. A special thanks to David Gilmour in the Education Team for the unique and inspirational Edubuzz world.

Our outdoor experience allowed us to discover more about John Muir, the local environment, teamwork, trust, leadership, art, living forests, campcraft, super sandwiches, leave no trace and much more.

I’m immensely proud to have been a part of your amazing adventure. I can’t wait to work with you all again – You are all stars! and thanks also for Supporting the Innerwick Residential  Centre

Check out more info and images at

Duke of Edinburgh – Supervisor and Assessor Training Jan 2013

Two courses for those interested in organising and assessing Duke of Edinburgh award courses in East Lothian will be run in January 2013. Courses will be based at the East Lothian Council Outdoor Learning Service. These DofE accredited courses are essential learning for those embarking on D of E programmes.

Duke of Edinburgh Expedition Supervisor training, Thursday 17th January 2013, 09.30am – 3.30pm

Aimed at ELC staff and volunteers. This course covers understanding the role of the Expedition Supervisor, Assessor and other adults involved in the delivery of the Expedition section. Attendance will develop Expedition Supervisors with an understanding and consistent interpretation of their role and responsibilities within the DofE, ensuring a high quality expedition experience for all young people.

(Cost Free – ELC Staff/Volunteers – External Staff/Volunteers £40.00)

Duke of Edinburgh Expedition Assessor training, Wednesday 30th January 2013, 09.30am – 3.30pm

For ELC staff and volunteers. This course provides the opportunity for new Expedition Assessors to have their training, skills and learning accredited by the DofE and nationally recognised. The programme has been designed to provide Expedition Assessors with a clear and consistent understanding of their role and responsibilities.

(Cost Free – ELC Staff/Volunteers – External Staff/Volunteers £40.00)

To book please contact the Outdoor Learning Service 0131 653 5217

More CPD opportunities at the Outdoor Learning Website – or visit our online brochure.