Building a beach

digger2Construction of the Blue Coat Play Beach is now complete! All 50 tonnes of sand are in the pit, the wooden balance beams and boardwalk are in place, the Beach Hut stripes have been painted, turf put down and grass seed sown. All that remains is installation of a gateway in the existing fenceline, which should happen within the next week. We need to leave the turf to settle for a little while before we open the area for play. Luckily the warm wet weather is really helping with this.
We are on schedule for the Play Beach to open by the end of June. Once we have launched the new play facility we will deliver some special family and community group events. If you work with a local community group serving young people and are interested in arranging a visit, then please get in touch via the website contact form.
Parents will receive a Play Beach FAQ sheet via Parentmail this week, providing more details about the facility and the benfits of sand play.


Reflection Garden

IMG 20160605 150640055 HDRIn half term, a small team of parents, staff and pupil volunteers transformed a courtyard space within school into the new Reflection garden. Supported by a community grant from Tyler Grange LLP, this space will provide space for quiet time, either at lunchtime or in classtime for small break out groups. It's perfect for reading, colouring, chess and calm social time with friends.

Thank you for those who gave up their holiday time to help.

Update! - we have received beautiful plant donations today from Landcare, including chocolate mint, wild strawberries, lemon thyme, chives, sedum and honeysuckle. Many thanks www.landcare.co.uk 

 

Christian aid week 2016 - creating a coin work

DSCN2917Last week, a wiggly art installation was created on the school playground as Blue Coat children and families took part in a fun fundraising event, in support of Christian Aid Week.
You may be thinking 'Why a worm?'
Families living in Bangladesh face the challenges of livng on islands in the middle of a river. Flooding is a regular occurrence and Christian Aid have already started to help families adapt to the problems by raising their houses and giving them seeds and worms so that they can grow more food.

Piggy banks were raided and pocket money brought in. The children had lots of fun placing their coins with care. Many thanks to all that took part, donating coins and also helping to collect them all up at the end of the day.

UPDATE! - our 100 metre worm raised £342.00! This is enough to change the life of a whole family living on an island in Bangladesh. 
Well done everyone, and especially to Mrs Blaken for leading the initiative.



Blue Coat Play Beach

beach writingWe are ready to start building our brand new outdoor play space – the Play Beach. This giant sandpit will be situated on the school field, on the opposite side of the fence to the Mud Kitchen. It features 50 tonnes of play sand, grass and wildflower mounds, ‘Beach Hut’ storage, a boardwalk and balance beam, and of course, plenty of buckets and spades!

Beach construction starts on Wednesday 25th May and is expected to take four weeks. We are working with outdoor play specialist Green Play Project.

Sand is hugely valuable in terms of children’s play. It offers open-ended opportunities for creativity and investigation (building, testing, deconstruction, tunneling), and allows for carrying out both gross motor (e.g. digging) and fine motor (e.g. adding features, drawing patterns) activities. Sand play can be carried out on your own or within a group or team. The Play Beach itself will create a new social area. The excavated soil will be used to create protective mounds around the beach, creating additional play features and seating. A large net will cover the sand when the pit is not in use, to prevent any contamination from animal scat.

This special playscape has been funded by grants from the Big Lottery ‘Awards for All’, Tesco ‘Bags of Help’ and the Magnox Socioeconomic fund. Initial fundraising work was carried out through Blue Coat’s PTA, allowing us to lever the extra support from external partners.

Watch this space for updates as the project progresses!


 

Family Forest school 'spring special'

DSCN2703Over 80 Blue Coat children and adults enjoyed a glorious morning of spring sunshine and fresh air in the latest installment of our Family Forest School and Outdoor Play events programme.
Forest School was open for business - with den building, mud kitchen, digging and bug hunting. Willow cuttings from around the school site were used for weaving shapes and structures.
A 50m 'wildflower river' was sown using seeds from the Grow Wild campaign, and a new hedge was planted with native saplings provided by the Woodland Trust.
Thank you everyone for coming!


Head's Tweet

from Mr Ryan

Well done, Key Stage 2 - a brilliant celebration of Christmas!

7 hours ago