Outdoor Learning

The value of outdoor learning is well recognised at Dore Primary School and is seen as one of the key drivers in the delivery of our exceptional curriculum. Research evidence is overwhelmingly clear about the positive links made between outdoor learning and the progress of children in all aspects of learning and the development of core values.

The Dore Primary School outdoor learning programme aims to foster self-esteem, independence, resilience, co-operation, personal responsibility, autonomy and motivation, as well as a deeply personal knowledge, respect and care for our environment and the ability to assess risk. 

Our approach is learner-led, play-centred, holistic and experiential. When taking part in outdoor learning children are engaging with nature in wild spaces in an exploratory, sensory and physical way. We believe it’s important to create, where possible, a long-term relationship between a location and a group of participants – giving all participants a chance to get a feel for how an environment changes over time.  We believe everybody should have regular, long-term access to a woodland or natural environment which provides them with inspirational and challenging outdoor learning opportunities.

Children are encouraged to take constructive risks in order to develop skills, good judgement and to learn and develop through managing their own and others’ risks. In planning activities we consider not only the risks but also the potential benefits for the learner. 

Learning outside the classroom is highly motivating. Learning in the school grounds, the locality, visiting sites further afield and residential experiences all stimulate interest, curiosity and passion for ‘doing’. These activities broaden young people’s horizons, enable them to develop new skills and build relationships. They make young people more engaged with learning and therefore more likely to do well. We are supported with our delivery by being a full member of the Learning Outside the Classroom (LOtC) organisation.

Our teachers plan outdoor learning opportunities across the curriculum and utilise our extensive grounds and facilities in order to maximise the impact of these experiences. Our learning continues far past our gates and fences with regular trips offsite beginning in the Foundation Stage with walks into the local community. Experiences continue throughout the school and further afield across all year groups which both complement and add great value to the excellent teaching and learning in our classrooms.

Core Values and Outdoor Learning

Outdoor learning at Dore Primary School allows us the opportunity to develop our Core Values of Resilience, Kindness, Resourcefulness and Creativity. So many of our activities, trips and residentials naturally lend themselves to social and personal growth as outlined below:

In 2015, Ofsted announced that the new common inspection framework would include a judgement on ‘personal development, behaviour and welfare’. Learning outside the classroom can offer significant support to schools’ delivery of this area of the framework.

Forest School

We have further embedded our commitment to outdoor learning by developing the Forest School approach to learning across the whole-school. Four members of staff have undergone Level 3 Forest School Practitioner training, and back in school have shared their expertise with other staff members.

Activities
Our activities depend on the ability and experience of participants. Examples of Forest School activities include:

• Woodland management and nature exploration
• Building dens and other structures
• Fires and cooking
• Games and invitations for imaginative play
• Natural crafts
• Using tools, such as knives and saws
• Scavenger hunts and adventure
• Seasonal celebrations

OUTDOOR LEARNING – INTENT, IMPLEMENTATION AND IMPACT STATEMENT:

Outdoor Learning News:

  • Old Hay Brook
    The Y2’s had a lovely walk down to Old Hay Brook as part of their outdoor learning project. The children meticulously created rafts to float down the river and this was a success (via a few entanglements!!) The children represented the school excellently and we are all very proud of their efforts.
  • Y3 Outdoor Learning day – Woodcraft skills
    We had a fabulous day practising woodcraft skills in our outside area – we used saws to cut logs, loppers to cut branches, knives to whittle sticks and Willow to weave into crowns! The children showed super resilience, particularly when sawing and lopping as it required lots of sustained effort and teamwork. We loved the… Read more: Y3 Outdoor Learning day – Woodcraft skills
  • Y4 Oakes Residential Day Two and Day Three
    Another very happy and successful residential has taken place at the fantastic Oakes Centre.  On Day Two lots more active experiences were had, culminating in a campfire sing-a-long to end the evening. As always, the care shown for our children by the team at the Oakes has been exemplary, enabling every child to have a… Read more: Y4 Oakes Residential Day Two and Day Three
  • Y4 Oakes Residential Day One
    We’ve had a great day today.  Sunny skies and smiley faces all round!  Children have taken part in every game, challenge and activity with full enthusiasm and determination.  They have rafted, climbed, races cars, crafted, tunnelled, been on the high ropes and of course been on the legendary tough mudder course. As part of our… Read more: Y4 Oakes Residential Day One
  • Y4 Legendary Legionary Day & Roman Technology Learning
    To support our learning about the Romans in Britain, Y4 found out about Roman Road making by creating a mini version of the layers used by the Romans to create their famour roads.  In June we will be putting this learning to the test to decide whether a local road could have been made by… Read more: Y4 Legendary Legionary Day & Roman Technology Learning
  • Year 5 Orienteering Competition
    24 fabulous orienteers enjoyed a wonderful afternoon competing against a host of other schools at Birley Academy. We didn’t win in terms of the times. But we definitely won in terms of teamwork and friendship. The children worked in teams of 4. They could have any number of runners at a time. Most schools sent one… Read more: Year 5 Orienteering Competition
  • Tree Planting
    During the last few weeks all the children in school have had several assembly presentations in which we’ve looked at the huge benefits of trees and woodland on our mental health and of course the wider environment. The Y3 and Y1 children teamed up to help each other plant their own native tree species on school grounds at Kings Croft. The children… Read more: Tree Planting
  • Year1 Outdoor learning
    Year 1 took part in the Great British Bird Watch 2024.
  • FS2 are ornithologists!
    In outdoor learning this week we headed on a tour of the grounds to see what kinds of birdlife we could spot in advance of the Great British Birdwatch happening this weekend. The children had to exercise a lot of skills: observation, regulating themselves so they can stay calm to not scare the birds, matching… Read more: FS2 are ornithologists!
  • Y3 Outdoor Learning – Shelter Building
    Linked to our Pole to Pole learning journey our theme this term was shelter building. Our day was suitably chilly -2 degrees but no one complained! Just look how we got on. There were four activities running through out the day: Activity 1: To make a ridge line shelter tarp lean to. Activity 2 –… Read more: Y3 Outdoor Learning – Shelter Building
  • Y4 Winter Walk
    To end an excellent first term in Y4, we spent our penultimate day before the Christmas holiday undertaking a 10 kilometre walk from school, up to Totley Moss and Blacka Moor, then back to school. As you can see, the views were NOT amazing as the weather was pretty awful. Fortunately, Y4 children (and teachers)… Read more: Y4 Winter Walk
  • Y4 English – Portal Stories
    Y4 have spent a great deal of care, time and effort creating these amazing stories. First we read about different examples of ‘portal story’, including The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe and The Phantom Tollbooth. We worked out that mostly portal stories start with someone who isn’t happy with their everyday life (just like… Read more: Y4 English – Portal Stories
  • Y3 Winter Walk
    Here is Y3 on our Winter Walk. Before the walk the children made flapjack ready to eat as a snack on the way round. Y3 walked 3.6 miles and were all so resilient and respectful, we even sang some Christmas songs too.
  • Year 5 – Outdoor Learning – Anglo-Saxon and Viking Day!
    Year 5 spent a brillinat day using the skills that Anglo-Saxon and Viking settlers would have needed. Today these techniques would be seen as camp-craft or survival skills but then they would be basic everyday activities. Fire-lighting Cooking on an open fire Shelter building Sewing Eating!
  • Year 5 recreate the events of 1066
  • Year 5 History – The ‘Battle’ of Dore!
    You might have seen this memorial on the green in Dore. Year 5 wanted on investigate futher. In fact, there is very little evidence of what took place in Dore in the 9th century. It is clear that King Ecgbert met with King Eanred but was there a battle or did something else take place?… Read more: Year 5 History – The ‘Battle’ of Dore!
  • Y1 Autumn Walk
    Year 1 went on an Autumn walk to look for seasonal changes.
  • Y3 Outdoor Learning Day
    Y3 braved the outdoors for our session on rope skills. There were four activities running through out the day: Activity 1: Challenges to tie different knots (reef, overhand, half hitch and timber hitch). Activity 2: Using shear and square lashing to create structures. Activity 3: Create a friendship bracelet using a basic knot. Activity 4:… Read more: Y3 Outdoor Learning Day
  • Apple Stewing
    This week the children in FS2 put their peeling and chopping skills to the test. Following a safety talk we used peelers to peel the apple skins and then a knife to chop our apples into chunks. We could then head to the DT Studio and stew our apples with some sugar and cinnammon which… Read more: Apple Stewing
  • The Great Fire of Dore
    This half term, we’ve focused on the bustling life of 17th-century London. Whilst exploring this topic, we created models of classic 17th-century houses and then got hands-on with some fire experiments to see how they’d hold up. It was a mix of history and science as we tried to understand why the Great Fire of… Read more: The Great Fire of Dore
  • Y4 Natural Balms
    Taking inspiration from stories of some of the people of the Amazon Rainforest, and how they utilise many of the plants and fruits found in the rainforest, Y4 created a balm useful as a remedy for insect bites and stings from plantain (the grass not the fruit), olive oil and beeswax. We boiled the oil,… Read more: Y4 Natural Balms
  • Y4 River Fieldwork
    To tie in with our ‘Amazonian Adventure’, Y4 learned about the features of rivers, and how water flows through them. To embed the new vocabulary and test out some ideas (hypotheses) we had come up with, we visited Old Hay Brook on a Geography Field Trip. We sketched and annotated what we could see, using… Read more: Y4 River Fieldwork
  • Y4 Layers of the Rainforest
    As part of our ‘Amazonian Adventure’ learning journey, we studied how the flora of the rainforest can be split into different layers: emergent, canopy, understorey and undergrowth/forest floor. To conslidate this learning, children spent an outdoor learning session trying to recreate scale models of the rainforest using scavenged items.
  • Y3 Science & Outdoor learning – types of skeletons
    As Scientists, Year 3 found out about the different types of skeletons: vertebrates (back bone) and invertebrates (no back bone). These skeleton types were further classified into: endoskeletons (back bone and bones in side body), exoskeletons (no backbone and bones outside of body) and hydrostatic skeletons (no bones). We sorted different different animals into these… Read more: Y3 Science & Outdoor learning – types of skeletons
  • Year 6 Aztec Immersion
    Our Year 6 pupils have been exploring the Aztec civilisation as we start our first learning journey of the year. Drama, outdoor learning and story-telling have immersed us in this fascinating culture.
  • Y4 SpiDOREwick Chronicles
    Y4 started the year by immersing ourselves into the magical world of The Spiderwick Chronicles. Through our reading, we discovered that it is possible to gain ‘The Sight’, allowing humans to see into the ‘faerie’ world. This world contains all sorts of creatures, from fairies and pixies to trolls and boggarts. Once we had gained… Read more: Y4 SpiDOREwick Chronicles
  • Y4 Health and Wellbeing – Friendship Photos
    To start the year, Y4 spent one of our first Health and Wellbeing lessons thinking about friendship, and what makes a great friend. We then went outside and took photos of our friendships in action.
  • New to Year 3!
    Year 3 have a had a fantastic time in our new classes and took advantage of the sunny weather to take part in some team building activities. We had to work as a team to complete the challenges ensuring we listened to each other, cooperated well and were resilient when the task was tricky! The… Read more: New to Year 3!
  • Y4 End of Year D&T and Outdoor Learning
    To finish off an amazing year in Y4, we managed to squeeze in some activities that we had wanted to do in earlier learning journeys but didn’t manage to fit in. The first was thinking back to our ‘Legendary Legionary’ learning journey, then studying how the Romans developed the use of arches to create stable… Read more: Y4 End of Year D&T and Outdoor Learning
  • Year 3 Summer Walk
    To celebrate the end of Year 3, we enjoyed a lovely walk together up to Blacka Moor (and back!). The children (and parent helpers) were brilliant enjoying the countryside and being together. We spotted some features of plants we had been leaning about (Mainly sticky seed dispersal techniques!) We also collected rocks for analysis the… Read more: Year 3 Summer Walk
  • Y5 Veg Patch – Harvest Time
    Y5 have been harvesting their produce and using it to create a tasty end of term meal. The children harvested, cleaned, peeled and chopped the variety of vegetables and herbs that we have grown this year and used these to cook a tasty meal of roast veg, couscous, salad leaves and feta cheese. The whole… Read more: Y5 Veg Patch – Harvest Time
  • FS2 Final outdoor learning with Miss Bradley – A camp fire cook up!
    What an amazing day we’ve had in Foundation today…everyone helped to pick, wash, chop and cook our vegetables that we planted back in Spring. The children even had a go at fire-lighting using the flint and steel. We added some rosemary to the potatoes and carrot and served them up – so warm and tasty… Read more: FS2 Final outdoor learning with Miss Bradley – A camp fire cook up!
  • FS2 Archery
    This week in outdoor learning the children all had a go at Archery. We learnt about the equipment we were using and talked about the best technique. The children were amazing at taking turns, helping each other, and cheering each other on. We were impressed with their strength, coordination and balance.
  • FS2 Pirate Medallions
    This week in outdoor learning the children made their own pirate medallions. They moulded the clay with their hands and scavenged for small natural gems among the wildlife garden. They then decorated their medallions, taking their time, thinking about patterns, shapes and textures (building on last week’s learning). Once the medallions are dry, the children… Read more: FS2 Pirate Medallions
  • Y4 Oakes Residential Day Two
    After EVERY child had a good night’s sleep, we’ve had another great day of action-packed activity at the Oakes. The photos tell their own story…
  • Year 4 Oakes Residential Day One
    Day One of our residential has so far been a tremendous success. As you can see from the photos below, it has been a non-stop day, with lots of fantastic activities on offer. Lunch and dinner have also gone down very well! As always, the Oakes leaders have been their usual caring, helpful and cheerful… Read more: Year 4 Oakes Residential Day One
  • FS2 Nature Treasure Chests
    What a magical time we have had this week in outdoor learning. Children had to hunt high and low for natures treasures on our school grounds and found some really interesting things. Off we went with our treasure chests (egg boxes) which we filled with: snail shells, baby conkers, apple babies, cherry babies, catkins, beech… Read more: FS2 Nature Treasure Chests
  • Outdoor Art – Mandalas
    This wonderful outdoor art was created as part of the Year 3 ‘How does your garden grow?’ learning journey. We were partly inspired by the buddist monks who grind up rocks to make their mandalas over 60 hours. We just worked in TASC groups to construct art works using the natural resources from our lovely… Read more: Outdoor Art – Mandalas
  • FS2 Pirate nature flags
    This week in outdoor learning the children made their own pirate flags using natural resources. They chose various leaves and flowers, laid them on a piece of cotton, folded this in half and then bashed all the pigment out using a hammer. The children were safe and responsible with the tools and very creative with… Read more: FS2 Pirate nature flags
  • Y1 Outdoor Learning
    Y1 used natural resources to make Father’s Day Cards.
  • FS2 Orienteering (outdoor learning)
    This week children in FS2 had the opportunity to try orienteering. We had to put our map reading skills to the test and communicate effectively for this task. Children hunted for coloured flags around the school grounds, using numbers on a map to help them. We were really impressed with their determination to complete the… Read more: FS2 Orienteering (outdoor learning)
  • Love your burial ground Year 3 plant survey
    As part of ‘Love your burial ground week’ and the start of our ‘How does your garden grow’ learning journey, Year 3 visited Dore Church to make a botanical survey of the plants growing there. We found all sorts of species of grass, flowers and trees in this unique habitat. We also made some sketches and… Read more: Love your burial ground Year 3 plant survey
  • Y2 – Science (plants)
    In Y2 we have been learning about the parts of plants and what plants need to survive. We have planted beans in the classroom and seeds in our outdoor planters. Over the next few weeks we are going to observe and describe how they grow in different conditions.
  • FS2 Summer Nature Scavenger Hunt
    This week we welcomed the children back into Summer 2 with a scavenger hunt. Firstly we shared the poem ‘June’ by John Updike. We talked about long, warm summer days and adventures that we like to go on, games we like to play outside and being out and about in nature. We went outside to… Read more: FS2 Summer Nature Scavenger Hunt
  • Y2 Old Hay Brook
    In our outdoor learning, the children used junior-hacksaws and square lashing knots to create rafts. We then used our science learning of floating and sinking to test if they would float on the brook. The children all had a wonderful time (although some rafts were damaged in the process!). Thanks to the parents who were… Read more: Y2 Old Hay Brook
  • Y4 English – Writing Immersion
    To support our writing sequence where children wrote a story about the Iceni tribe burning down London, Y4 enhanced their writing by generating vocabulary for their senses whilst experiencing a real open fire. Back in the classroom a carousel of learning and facts allowed children to collect information and generate ideas for what sort of… Read more: Y4 English – Writing Immersion
  • ‘Allsorts of Sports Day’ 2023
    Sports Day 2023 followed a very loose theme of ‘Allsorts of Sports’. We had every child, from Reception up to Y6 participating all day across seven zones. We had cricket (R66T Academy from Abbeydale Sports Ground), football (Chesterfield Academy young coaches), dance (Gemini), along with an obstacle course, relay race zone with traditional sports day… Read more: ‘Allsorts of Sports Day’ 2023
  • Y5 Veg Patch Project
    Over the past few months, the Y5s have been undertaking the ambitious and challenging task of constructing vegetable beds in order to grow their own produce. We’ve been learning about “farm to fork” and how the fresh produce in our supermarkets is grown. This builds on the children’s Y3 Science learning on plant growth and… Read more: Y5 Veg Patch Project
  • Y5 Castleton Visit
    Y5 had a great trip out to Castleton last week. The children visited Peveril Castle and learnt about the history of the castle and how it was built in the wake of the Norman Conquest (when William the Conqueror came to the throne). The children were able to link this with their learning in relation… Read more: Y5 Castleton Visit
  • Y4 Legendary Legionary Day
    To support our learning in history, design and technology, art and design, PE and outdoor learning, Y4 spent the day imagining and experiencing life as Roman legionaries. They set up camp using our outdoor learning tarps, then created shield designs using classical ideas to represent the type of soldier they were. Next came military practice… Read more: Y4 Legendary Legionary Day
  • Y1 Outdoor learning
  • Y4 Roman Road Making
    To support our understanding of Roman technologies, Y4 spent an afternoon learning about how the Romans built layers up to create their famous road system. We found out about the different materials used, then went outside and had a go a creating mini ones of our own.
  • Y1 Outdoor learning
    Year 1 have learnt about the parts of a plant!
  • Ancient Egypt Scale model
    To kick off our Leaning Journey, Year 3 worked together to make a scale model of Ancient Egypt. It included: The River Nile Delta Fertile land Red Sea Mediterranean Sea Eastern and Western Deserts So many monuments! It was super lesson using history, geography, art and design skills as well as working together using the… Read more: Ancient Egypt Scale model
  • Y2 & Y6 Tree Planting
    This afternoon, the Y2s and Y6s worked together to plant trees. We applied knowledge from our science learning about habitats and plants.
  • Y4 Flying Cars
    As part of our “Y4 Go Wild!” learning journey, Y4 were inspired by the idea of creating ‘flying cars’, like in this picture. In science, we found out how to create electrical circuits, and how to represent these circuits on paper using the correct symbols. We did this using battery packs, crocodile clips and lightbulbs,… Read more: Y4 Flying Cars
  • Pre-School Spring 2 Week 5 Eggs!
    We’ve been reading the book ‘We’re going on an egg hunt’ (very similar idea to we’re going on a bear hunt!). We’ve been on a few egg hunts, told the story using the PE equipment to help and been creating our own beautiful eggs. We’ve been thinking about birds making their nests and the children… Read more: Pre-School Spring 2 Week 5 Eggs!
  • Year 3 Creswell Crags 2023
    To really immerse ourselves in our ‘Mists of Time’ learning journey, Year 3 took a trip to the Stone Age site of Creswell Crags. Although there were threats of a return of an Ice Age, we had a super day experiencing both life in the Stone Age and working as a palaeontologist. The children could… Read more: Year 3 Creswell Crags 2023
  • FS2 Elder Bead Caterpillars
    The children demonstrated such resilience this week as we learnt how to use a new tool – the hack saw. After listening to the story of The Very Hungry Caterpillar, we decided to make our own caterpillars using sticks of Elder. The children learnt how to saw the wood into small pieces and then remove… Read more: FS2 Elder Bead Caterpillars
  • FS2 Jack and the Beanstalk
    We included a bit of drama in our outdoor learning this week! Off we went onto the school grounds where we re-told the story of Jack and the Beanstalk. Some of the children took on different roles from the story while others were very entertained as the audience. The children thoroughly enjoyed ‘climbing the beanstalk’,… Read more: FS2 Jack and the Beanstalk
  • FS2, Jack and the Beanstalk
    The children have been incredible actresses and actors in outdoor learning this week. They took on different roles in the story of Jack and the Beanstalk. Those who acted, spoke with such enjoyment and confidence, and those who watched made a fantastic and enthusiastic audience. After our play, the children all planted their own broad… Read more: FS2, Jack and the Beanstalk
  • FS2 Bear Hunt Den Building
    In outdoor learning this week, the children recalled the story of ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’. They told it with such confidence and enjoyment! Next we went on a teddy bear hunt, but there was a problem…the bears needed dens! So off we went with our loppers to chop some branches down to layer… Read more: FS2 Bear Hunt Den Building
  • Y1
    Y1 have been exploring the outdoor area of learning.
  • Y6 – Tree Planting at Green Oak Recreation Ground
    As part of our ‘Into the Wild’ topic, Year 6 children have been learning about how important trees are for biodiversity as well as a means to combat climate change. To help develop green spaces in the local community, Year 6 children have planted trees, both as whips as well as from seeds, at Green… Read more: Y6 – Tree Planting at Green Oak Recreation Ground
  • FS2 We’re Going on a Bear Hunt
    Today, the children went on a very exciting bear hunt! We went through some long wavy grass, thick oozy mud, a deep cold river, a deep dark forest, a swirling whirling snowstorm and tip-toed through a narrow gloomy cave…only to find a BEAR! Luckily, the bear was friendly and we asked it lots of questions… Read more: FS2 We’re Going on a Bear Hunt
  • FS2 Bird watching
    This week in outdoor learning, the children put their looking and listening skills to the test and they were…amazing! Knowing just how important it was to keep still and quiet, we gathered outside and the bird watching began. Well, we saw….crows, pigeons, blackbirds, blue tits, magpies and sparrows! We returned to the classroom to make… Read more: FS2 Bird watching
  • FS2 The Tomten and the Fox
    In outdoor learning this week, the children listened to the story of the Tomten and the Fox – a Scandinavian tale of a hungry fox in search of food in winter. Luckily for him, a kind Tomten (Scandinavian troll) who guards the farm at night was on watch and shared his bowl of warm porridge… Read more: FS2 The Tomten and the Fox
  • FS2 – Walk in Dore Village
    We had a slightly soggy but enjoyable morning being Geographers and having an explore of our local surroundings and visiting Dore Village to look and landuse and see what types of services were available there. We were impressed with how well the children behaved on the walk and how much they listened and observed about… Read more: FS2 – Walk in Dore Village
  • Y1 Outdoor Learning
    The children created ice pendants today using natural materials. Unfortunately the temperature isn’t going to drop below 9 degrees tonight, so we’ve opted for the freezer instead!
  • Y4 Winter Walk
    To end an excellent first term in Y4, we spent our penultimate day before the Christmas holiday undertaking a 10 kilometre walk from school, up to Totley Moss and Blacka Moor, then back to school. As you can see, the views were amazing as the sky was crystal clear, and we kept warm all day… Read more: Y4 Winter Walk
  • Y4 Portal Stories
    Y4 have spent a great deal of care, time and effort creating these amazing stories. First we read about different examples of ‘portal story’, including The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe and The Phantom Tollbooth. We worked out that mostly portal stories start with someone who isn’t happy with their everyday life (just like… Read more: Y4 Portal Stories
  • Y6 Winter Walk
    With a focus on our curriculum driver of Outdoor Learning, as well as, for some children, our school value of Resilience, Year 6 excelled themselves in completing our annual Winter Walk. Conditions this year were snowy and bright, making for a perfect day to appreciate the beauty of the moorland in winter.
  • Y3 Polar Shelter building
    Inspired by the intrepid explorers we have been learning about and the Inuit people who have lived in the Arctic for thousands of years (also Mr Fletcher!), Year 3s worked in teams to build a shelter to survive the harsh polar climates!
  • Y2 – Sheltering from the December weather
  • FS2 Winter Lanterns
    In outdoor learning this week the children collected leaves from the school grounds. We searched for freshly fallen leaves because we needed them for decoration. The children identified which leaves they liked and why. Next the children found a jar with their name on and we took everything back to the warmth of our classroom.… Read more: FS2 Winter Lanterns
  • FS2 Winter Tidy Up!
    This week the children and I decided it was time to have a good winter tidy up outside. This involved scrubbing and cleaning the area, and working as a team to put things away. The children then came up with their own ideas about what they would like the space to look like. Children drew… Read more: FS2 Winter Tidy Up!
  • Y2- Preparing and Cooking Chilli
  • FS2 The Leaf Man
    This week we shared the story ‘The Leaf Man’ by Lois Elhert. It was a magical story which swept us outside among the trees as we hunted for leaves on our own school grounds. Using an identification sheet to help us, we found Sycamore, Beech, Birch, Horse and Sweet Chestnut leaves and ivy. Some of… Read more: FS2 The Leaf Man
  • Y4 Natural Balms
    Taking inspiration from stories of some of the people of the Amazon Rainforest, Y4 created a balm useful as a remedy for insect bites and stings from plantain (the grass not the fruit), olive oil and beeswax. We boiled the oil, then added the plantain and simmered for another 10 minutes, then we strained the… Read more: Y4 Natural Balms
  • FS2 Apple Stew
    A warm welcome back to Autumn 2. We kick started outdoor learning this week with some tasty apple stew. We collected the apples from the tree on our school grounds, peeled and chopped them, before stewing them on the camp fire. The children were ready, safe and respectful around the fire and when using the… Read more: FS2 Apple Stew
  • Fire #2 Why did London burn so quickly?
    We held two experiments, one with the houses close together and the other with them further apart. We concluded that if the houses were further apart, the fire would not spread, because we removed the ‘fuel’ in the fire triangle.
  • Y5 Shelter Building – Ridge-Line Shelters
    Y5 have been developing their outdoor learning skills by building shelters using tarps, staves and rope. They learnt how to tie and lash using clove hitches and shear lashings; creating supported and free-standing shelters. They ensured that their rope-work was very tight, creating a rigid shelter that could keep out the wind and rain. Alongside… Read more: Y5 Shelter Building – Ridge-Line Shelters
  • Year 3 Healthy Walk
    Last week, Year 3 set out on a healthy walk to Ecclesall Woods. We were looking for evidence of things that had been eaten (and the flap jacks didn’t count!). We used the evidence to think about the food chains that might exist in our local environment: producers, consumers, prey and predators. It was also… Read more: Year 3 Healthy Walk
  • Y2 – Maths – Empty number lines!
    Today, the children took their learning about empty numberline and went outside to apply it! They worked with a partner and made their own 0-10 or 0-100 numberlines and tested one another to estimate the position of different numbers.
  • Year 3 – Team Work
    Year 3 began the term by taking part in our team building challenges. This showed us their excellent cooperation and team work skills. Look how well they worked together…
  • Y4 River Fieldwork
    To tie in with our ‘Amazonian Adventure’, Y4 learned about the features of rivers, and how water flows through them. To embed the new vocabulary and test out some ideas (hypotheses) we had come up with, we visited Old Hay Brook on a Geography Field Trip. This involved lots of hands on, practical learning, but… Read more: Y4 River Fieldwork
  • FS2 Spin Drums
    What a windy week! This week our learning took us outside where we observed the trees blowing and heard the leaves rustling. We marched up to the Horse Chestnut Tree, and what gems did we find? Conkers…. and so many of them! We gathered them up and brought them back to our classroom, pockets bulging.… Read more: FS2 Spin Drums
  • Y2 Wattle and Daub
    The children built a wall using the materials that people had available to them in 1665. They mixed together water, manure, earth and straw to make the building material, before compacting it onto the woven wall.
  • Y4 Layers of the Rainforest
    As part of our ‘Amazonian Adventure’ learning journey, we studied how the flora of the rainforest can be split into different layers: emergent, canopy, understorey and undergrowth/forest floor. To conslidate this learning, children spent an outdoor learning session trying to recreate scale models of the rainforest using scavenged items.
  • FS2 Mr Muddy Face
    We met another of Mr Owl’s friends this week – Mr Muddy Face. He can be tricky to spot, but if you look really carefully then you might just see….clay for a face, acorns for eyes, feathers for ears and a big shiny brown conker for his nose…yep that’s him. Captivated by his presence, the… Read more: FS2 Mr Muddy Face
  • Y4 Outdoor Maths
    For a change to a usual maths lesson, we put our learning on our new Outdoor Learning posts around the school field, so children were able to get some exercise while they were working. It proved very popular!
  • Y4 SpiDOREwick Chronicles
    Y4 started the year by immersing ourselves into the magical world of The Spiderwick Chronicles. Through our reading, we discovered that it is possible to gain ‘The Sight’, allowing humans to see into the faerie world. This world contains all sorts of creatures, from fairies and pixies to trolls and boggarts. Once we had gained… Read more: Y4 SpiDOREwick Chronicles
  • FS2 The Pebble People
    This week the children met Mr Owl – a wise old thing who lives among the tress at Dore. He told them a story about his friends ‘the pebble people’. Challenged with a hunt to find them, the children explored the school grounds excitedly. Only, when they found them, they discovered that the pebble people… Read more: FS2 The Pebble People
  • Outdoor Learning with Miss Bradley
    This year the children in Foundation Stage will be learning outdoors with Miss Bradley. Each week there will be a different focus/theme where children will develop their kindness, creativity, resilience and resourcefulness. We kicked off the first week with parachute games, getting to know one another and sharing stories in the sunshine.
  • Aztec Immersion – Outdoor Learning
    Our first learning journey in Year 6 is ‘Los ConquistaDORES’ and as part of our immersion into the Aztec culture, the year 6 pupils practised their fire-lighting skills to grill a portion of delicious corn-on-the-cob (an essential food for people in Mexico for thousands of years). They persevered through wind and rain, and showed a… Read more: Aztec Immersion – Outdoor Learning
  • Y2 Outdoor Provision – Problem Solving
  • Y5 Castleton Residential – Wednesday
    Wednesday was walk day. The air was cooler, but the skies were still clear. As you can see from the photos, the views from Mam Tor were amazing. The walk also took in Peveril Castle, as part of our ‘Who Do We Think We Are? The Normans’ learning journey.
  • Y5 Castleton Residential – Tuesday
    On Tuesday morning, while some children went for a stroll and a paddle down Miller’s Dale, others completed the High Ropes challenges and obstacle course on site. In the afternoon some groups went caving, while others did the High Ropes then had a dip in the pond! Tuesday finished off with a toasted marshmallow around… Read more: Y5 Castleton Residential – Tuesday
  • Y4 Raft Building (and Floating!)
    As an end of term celebration, which we had to postpone from Easter because of rain (seems a long time ago now!), Y4 utilised some of their Outdoor Learning knowledge to lash sticks together to create rafts. We then took them down to Old Hay Brook and Totley Brook to test them out. As you… Read more: Y4 Raft Building (and Floating!)
  • Y5 Castleton Residential – Monday
    Although it has been a hot couple of days (!), Y5 have spent their time in the relative calm, and slightly cooler air of Castleton and the surrounding area. The dorms have been lovely and cool, and activities have been adapted and amended to ensure that everyone has had a good supply of water, whilst… Read more: Y5 Castleton Residential – Monday