Welcome to our newest page – featuring the wonderful ideas and work to upgrade the playground and school environs, to create a fantastic natural and fun learning landscape for all the pupils to enjoy and benefit from, in their own free time as well as developing and improving outdoor learning capacity for all.
There are already wonderful contributions pledged by parents, carers and extended families which includes the wider school community. This has really captured attention and is motivating us all by the possibilities. It is hoped that everyone can make a contribution to this exciting development, one way or another.
So far the ideas we are developing are inspired by the Parent Council’s previous consultation with the pupils and parents / carers (in 2017) – and its Play sub group and by an independent report compiled by K. Clarke (who is Support from the Start’s Loose Parts Play Development Officer, from Haddington Cluster) before the summer break. We are very grateful for all this input which gives a tremendous starting point and foundation to plan from. We also have the East Lothian Play Policy and Scottish Government’s Play Strategy to support our School Improvement Plan for 2018/19.
The Vision – creating different zones around the playground. Check out the new You Tube channel to hear more.
The Why – Children need time to play freely, innovatively, socially and more, across the various age groups in ways which are natural, exciting, challenging, sociable and comforting.
They all have this right
but we know ‘free play is something that children are experiencing less and less. This affects skills and learning. Research points to ‘the more play – the better’ and with good planning, we can also develop these areas into the Curriculum for Excellence – helping outcomes to be achieved for all our young people.
The Plan – using local talents, enthusiasm, financial and time contributions to work together to create a dynamic, welcoming and inspiring space around the school.
The Aim – Play will be Inclusive and Diverse.
All children have the right to play and so, we will work to create an environment to maximise independence and enjoyable interdependence wherever we can.
We want our playground environs to be as accessible and as safe as necessary for all our children to play, to choose their activities and to have fun with their friends as well as make new friendships and experience positive relationships. We want PPS to have an indoors and outdoors environment that the children can enjoy, where they feel they belong and can grow in skills, confidence and health. Where they thrive. We know this means we need to build in options to play that encourages curiosity, challenge and managing risk, opportunities to test / try things out and move on from it when it doesn’t work out first time around – but with perseverance to try again and courage to try another way – to perform and entertain, to observe and listen, to laugh and to be serious too. Play is something that every child needs throughout life.
- Share the possibilities and potential to get involved. Please share the inspiration. You’ll find updates and conversations starting on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (as well as the You Tube channel) – so just search for Mission Pencaitland Play for more or follow these links. (The links will take you to external sites).
- Talk to anyone who may be able to help, from helping with refreshments on the community prep day, to helping to create or provide the materials and equipment. Gardeners, biodiversity students, granny’s old pots and pans, someone with carpentry and joinery skills, off cuts of guttering etc….
“Many hands will make light work.”
- Diary Dates: Keep the 28th Oct free in your diaries and encourage others to help out. Back up day will be the following Sunday, 4th Nov.
- Think about how we can make this sustainable and continue to work on maximising the outcomes for the children.
- Involve the kids as much as possible – it’s their play experiences and we want a shared ownership experience.