Kids' joy as forest school is opened

Children clambered, climbed and explored as their new forest school area was opened this week.

SHREW COPYRIGHT SHROPSHIRE STAR STEVE LEATH 17/11/2021..Pic in Shrewsbury at Coleham Prm Sch, at the opening of there new Forest Area/ school.  Staff member: Chrissi Harris with:  Eliza Hart 4..
SHREW COPYRIGHT SHROPSHIRE STAR STEVE LEATH 17/11/2021..Pic in Shrewsbury at Coleham Prm Sch, at the opening of there new Forest Area/ school. Staff member: Chrissi Harris with: Eliza Hart 4..

Green fingered staff and families of Coleham Primary School pupils spent the summer transforming a forgotten and unloved patch of land for this vibrant new learning space.

The natural woodland and orchard area is full of exciting and imaginative activities such as potion making, an outdoor stage, treasure station, digging pit nad dinosaur cove. But its show stopper is the physical assault course and low ropes trail that weave amongst the apple trees.

Some of the youngest children at the school, in Shrewsbury, took part in the opening ceremony by giving speeches before the cutting of the ribbon. They invited Franky Giani, founder of local Early Years business 'Inside Out Learning' as special guest of honour.

Early Years Foundation Stage leader, Miss Chrissi Harris, said: "This is a fabulous addition to our setting and has been tailor made for the needs of our youngest children. We are so lucky to be situated between the best of both worlds, on the doorstep to Shrewbury's historic town centre and surrounded by wildlife with badgers living all around us, even underneath our classroom! This provides rich learning experiences for our children who are so passionate about the natural world and the environment."

Pupil Arthur Taylor, aged four, said: "I like the Spiderman web because it makes my bones stronger and healthier. If you want to be best at writing you've got to be strong."

Inside Out Learning has worked with Coleham School on this project during the last six months and the children have been included throughout the journey, to plan and design the space around their interests and fascinations, incorporating their favourite activities and wish list items.

Franky Giani said: "I am delighted to have been part of this special day for the children. Outdoor learning has never been more important and children need opportunities to connect with nature and real hands on experiences, something Coleham is good at nurturing. It is helping the next generation learn to respect their local environment."

Coleham Primary School headteacher, Claire Jones, said: "Outdoor Learning is a big part of our ethos and creative curriculum. I am so proud of what has been achieved and its been a real team effort including the staff, children and community. It started of with an idea to gain a physical assault course trail to improve the balance, co-ordination and gross motor skills for our youngest children but once staff have an idea, they run with it and a project quickly takes off, it has become much more than any of us envisaged and a real asset for our school. This will have a huge impact on the children."

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