The Great Outdoors – Outdoor Education at Clifton School

It is widely understood that learning outdoors is motivating, memorable and meaningful for children. With our school grounds benefiting from a revamped playground area and school garden we are making more of our outdoor spaces for learning. Each half term the classes take turns to work with Mrs Davies and other school staff on outdoor team building, problem solving and forest school activities. These are designed to develop skills in communication, collaboration and resilience alongside physical skills such as balance, stamina and co-ordination as well as personal safety, bushcraft and woodcraft. The activities often incorporate learning in other curriculum areas such […]

Outdoor Team Work

Class 2 were full of the joys of Spring on their first outdoor learning session this week. The sun shone brightly as the children worked together to tackle a range of problem solving challenges using lots of the 7 Cs of Clifton: communication, collaboration, commitment, confidence and curiosity. Judging by the huge smiles and enthusiastic cheering it was a successful afternoon and great fun!

Spring is on the way!

The Reception children took advantage of this week’s sunny weather and worked together to brighten up the school entrance. They collected soil from the mole hills on the green which they wheelbarrowed to the school garden and used it to fill two big planters. Then they planted some daffodils and petunias in the pots. We think they make the front entrance look more colourful and welcoming.

Winter wood gathering

Class 1 have braved the mud, rain, mud, wind, snow, mud and DINOSAURS in their outdoor learning sessions this half term and have loved every minute! Today was our last session for now and we focused on collecting wood ready for more campfires next half term. We were curious and confident, collaborated and communicated with each other and were committed to the challenge. To make it even more special we even saw the deer Mrs Davies had told us lived in the woods.

Secret Garden Campfire

Class 1 were very excited to be the first children to use the new doorway into the Secret Garden. And what better way to celebrate than with a campfire. The children have all learned how to keep safe around a campfire and can toast their own marshmellows safely. Thanks to all the adults who help with our Outdoor Learning sessions and to Mrs Davies for organising so many exciting things for us to do. We are already looking forward to our next sessions after Easter.

We’re Going on a Dinosaur Hunt

At first it seemed like any other Friday afternoon but Class 1 soon realised it was nothing of the sort! Imagine our surprise when we came across strange footprints on a walk around the woods behind school. And after following them for a short distance we found more unusual clues of creatures that had been there before us. Scaly skin rubbed off on tree bark, empty egg shells, scratch marks on tree trunks, bones and unusually coloured eggs in twiggy nests. What could it have been? We kept on searching and could not believe what we found……. ……the toy dinosaurs […]

Snow Comes to Clifton

How lucky was it that we had all our outdoor clothing still on the coat pegs one snowy Thursday morning in January! It did not take us long to get kitted up and set off to the woods around our Secret Garden. We must have been some of the first out as the main footprints we saw belonged to the deer and rabbits!  We stopped by to look at our dinosaur dens which all looked quite different with their covering of snow. After a wonderful walk under the winter sun we headed back to class and a drink of hot […]

Outdoor Learning

Class 1 have hardly noticed the cold winter weather in their Outdoor Learning sessions with Mrs Davies. So far they have been for a woodland walk looking for signs of winter, made dinosaur dens amongst the trees and worked together to build bridges for dinosaurs to cross the swamp. We have been using lots of our 7 Cs whilst working together including communication, craftsmanship, creativity, curiosity, commitment and  collaboration. Thank you so much to the parents and grandparents who accompany the children on their adventures – we think you have all been enjoying yourselves too!

Class 2 Go Outdoors

This half term has been Class 2’s turn for Outdoor Learning with Mrs Davies. This week the ground was too wet for the planned soil investigations…. it would have been mud! So Plan B was put into action and Class 2 worked together to restock our wood supplies for den building and fire making. Whilst searching the woods around the Secret Garden they also learned about some of the tree species growing there. Curiosity and Collaboration are just two of the 7 Cs being covered in this session.

Campfire Skills

Class 3 marked their final outdoor learning session for the autumn with a campfire in our new Secret Garden fire pit. The children all whittled their own sticks before toasting marshmallows and enjoying a warming hot chocolate made in the kelly kettle.  Fire making skills are all part of our outdoor learning award.