Children aren't meant to sit at a desk for hours on end - they need to move, they need space and they need unstructured spaces and activities for creative learning and spontaneous play.
Outdoor learning boosts confidence, social skills, communication, motivation, physical skills, knowledge and understanding. It has also been found to boost children's self-esteem, self-confidence, ability to work cooperatively and positive attitude to learning.
These benefits are in addition to the many health benefits of spending time outdoors - developing good physical fitness, as well as helping aid in critical development such as stability, bone density, muscle development, immunity and even eyesight.
We take the children out in all weather conditions (except strong winds); there is no such thing as bad weather and the children learn to celebrate the ever-changing environment and the magic of the seasons.
As the children progress through the school, their use and enjoyment of our glorious grounds does not diminish - and they are allowed to explore further afield in their break times. Many lessons are taken outdoors and very few children can be found indoors when he sun is shining.
We couldn't envisage a childhood without plenty of outdoor immersion, and here at Moor Park, that childhood is one complete with muddy knees, collections of natural treasures in pockets and a pair of wellies to hand.
Our purpose-built, wooden outdoor classroom situated by the lake provides a dedicated space for outdoor learning in all weathers. Whether the children listen to the raindrops drumming on the roof or prop the doors and windows open to hear birdsong, this is a classroom they all want to spend time in.
Of course, many lessons take place outside without the need for the outdoor classroom - whether it be learning how to read map references and a compass, reading under a tree, exploring the water cycle, creating natural art - or just escaping the walls to find inspiration in nature.
Our outdoor, wooden stage provides a fantastic performance area outside the confines of the classroom. Children love the sense of freedom that this offers, leaving them feel less inhibited and inspiring their imaginations - which in turn improves voice projection, posture and confidence.
Our outdoor theatre is used for class performances, rehearsals and Speech and Drama lessons from Year 1 to Year 8.
We have a dedicated and rather magical Woodland School area, with a cooking pit, a fire square, bamboo dens, a stream and space – lots of it!
Within the Woodland School area the children have time and space to explore, to develop independence, communication and collaborative skills - whether they are den-building, mini-beast hunting, stream-paddling or simply taking a moment to breathe in the fresh air.
The children get the opportunity to assess and manage risk - lifelong skills - as well as to engage with the nature on our doorstep, with all the myriad benefits to their physical and mental health that this offers.
During the Summer Term, Woodland School is also offered as an After School Club activity to the Pre-Prep pupils.