Blue Coat receives national Playwork Award!

awardresizeFantastic news!

Blue Coat has been awarded a national Playwork Award in the category 'Playwork in other contexts'. Mrs Murray picked up the playful 'woodpecker' trophy at the Annual Playwork Conference and Award evening in Eastbourne earlier this week (March 5th).

Mrs Murray, Blue Coat's Play Coordinator said,

"It is wonderful to have Blue Coat's commitment to play and a playwork approach in school recognised with this award. A really special thing about our journey over the last 5 years is the support we have received from the whole school community; donations to support play (pans, suitcases, wellies, boats!), parents cleaning toys, building Mud Kitchen furniture and mending existing equipment, or even just the not minding too much about grass stained knees, grubby socks and pockets filled with nature's treasures!
Special thanks should go to Blue Coat PTA for providing the initial funding for the school to work with OPAL Outdoor Play and Learning CiC and, of course, to the Blue Coat pupils, for responding with such energy and enthusiasm to every new opportunity presented to them."


Blue Coat shortlisted for play award


Great news!

Blue Coat has been shortlisted for a national Playwork Award. The category is 'Playwork in other contexts' and we will find out if we have been successful at the Playwork Awards ceremony in Eastbourne on Tuesday 5th March (as part of the Annual Playwork Conference).

Making the shortlist is wonderful recognition of the play journey we have been on over the last 5 years, and transformation of our site, attitude and approach to play within Blue Coat. Thank you and well done to EVERYONE in the school community for playing your part in this success. And fingers crossed.....!

Mrs Murray will tweet from the awards ceremony. You can follow this on Twitter: @Blue_Coat_Play


Autumn play terms 1 and 2, 2018

The first two terms of year 2018/19 have flown by and suddenly we are ready to break up for Christmas.

We've had a lovely start to the year, welcoming our new EYFS 'Buddies' in September, developing the play space behind 'The Mound', our 10 Year Forest School celebration, tree planting, bulb planting and taking advantage of all the natural loose parts that autumn brings.

Wheeled play on our playground tractors and trike has been popular with all ages and we now have some new seated scooters from Father Christmas to enjoy in the New Year.

Our welly sheds continue to serve us well and have allowed us to continue using the field and Play Beach as the wetter weather arrived.

Here are some photos from the last 2 terms showing the real range of how children play at Blue Coat, whatever the weather.

 We're looking forward to a playful new year. Join us on Friday 4th January 10am - 12pm for our next Playing Out event on the school driveway and car park.

Merry Christmas from Mrs Murray and the Blue Coat Play Team.

Blue Coat Play Vision

DSCN1451It's Global School Play Day 2019, and what better way to celebrate than to launch Blue Coat's Vision for Play (and, of course, enjoy some outdoor play!)

Our Play Vision was drafted by Blue Coat Year 6 pupils in the summer term 2018. The pupils were interviewed by Mrs Murray and had the chance to reflect on their play at school, to talk about what they felt was important and how their playtimes affected the rest of their time at school.

The Play Vision paints a picture of what we feel play at Blue Coat could and should be. The six statements describe what we would like all Blue Coat pupils to experience and feel through their play by the time they reach year 6. It also shows how much Blue Coat values play and is committed to supporting play for all our pupils.

The Play Vision has been presented to all pupils and staff and will inform our decision making and guide our future activities.


We live out our Christian values through play
- our core Christian values are practiced in our play
- respectful, responsible, creative and happy moments happen every day
- we can link these moments, our actions and our feelings

We are free
- play time is our time to play and relax
- we can choose what we want to do and who we want to play with
- we have lots of choice

DSC00430We are free-ranging
- we play outside all year
- a variety of spaces are open to us
- we are active every day

We are a community
- we all get to have our say
- our thoughts and actions help to improve outdoor play
- everyone in the school counts

We learn whilst we play
- play helps us to recognise our own strengths
- we can try new things
- we develop our people-skills and friendships through play

PLay Team award march2016We are supported
- we are confident that the adults at Blue Coat think our play time is important
- we are listened to
- we know that we can ask for help if we need it


Celebrating 10 years of Forest School

IMG 0932On Friday 2nd November, all pupils and staff took part in a Forest School extravaganza to celebrate 10 years of Forest School delivery.

The special event was supported by a grant from The Ernest Cook Trust.

All classes joined together on the school field for a whole day of ‘learning outside the classroom’, Forest School and play. There were over 20 activities to take part in and the children got to choose what they took part in and when, giving them lots of freedom throughout the day. The event was held as part of the international ‘Outdoor Classroom day’ initiative, with over 3.5 million children taking part around the world.

Activities included a barefoot trail, wood whittling, playing conkers, willow weaving, clay craft, bug hunting, den building, pioneering, nature art, rhythm sticks, Hapa zome (Japanese art using leaves, petals and hammers!) and mud painting.

The children were supported by over 60 volunteers from the Blue Coat community, including the original members of Blue Coat’s Outdoor Club in 2008, now students at Katharine Lady Berkeley's secondary school.

The day concluded with a school assembly on the field around a campfire.

Mr Brooks, Forest School Leader said, “I love leading Forest School at Blue Coat. It is wonderful seeing the children working together, developing  their decision making, their independence and creativity – skills that fit perfectly with our school vision of being ‘Future Ready’  - all whilst gaining a love and respect for nature and the world around them.”

Many thanks to all who supported the event, by donating resources, preparing activities or volunteering on the day itself.
Here are some photos of the event: