Platinum Play!

2 outdoor playWe are thrilled to announce that following a full assessment on Friday afternoon, Blue Coat has achieved a Platinum level award for the quality of our outdoor play at lunchtime. With a score of 91.7%, this puts Blue Coat within the top 15 schools in the country in terms of high quality play provision.
Our assessment was conducted by Michael Follett, Director of Outdoor Play and Learning CIC (OPAL). Michael is a qualified teacher and play worker, is a Trustee for the national charity Play England, and Play Adviser to the National Trust and the Football Association (FA).

Michael participated in a full lunchtime session, with a site tour to observe and interact with pupils and the Play Team, assessing the opportunities, environments and support we provide for play. This was followed by a in-depth audit session with the Headteacher, Play Coordinator and PTA Chair, examining all aspects of our play provision, including access, supervision, health and safety and maintenance, policy, leadership and participation.
Areas that recieved high praise were the inclusion of man-made and natural 'loose parts' play, improved engagement for girls, the significant reduction in behaviour incidents, high quality direct, remote and roving play supervision practices, and a whole-school approach to play involving Governors, Headteacher, teachers, support staff, pupils, families and the wider community.

Congratulations everyone! A wonderful result for what is now emerging as a real specialism for Blue Coat. Thank you to all who have supported the Play initiative. There are lots of exciting plans still to come!

Follow us on Twitter!   @Blue_Coat_Play

Scrap Shed launch!

DSCN1119Blue Coat's new 'large loose parts' play facility, the Scrap Shed, launched today, with a special celebration event and ribbon cutting, led by our Future Leaders.
‘Loose parts’ are items and materials that children can move, adapt, control, change and manipulate within their play. They provide a high level of creativity and choice, as there are endless possibilities for how they can be used. Research has shown that the degree of creativity and inventiveness within an environment is directly proportional to the number of variables in it.
The items are diverse and include suitcases, plastic and cardboard tubes, tubs, tarpaulins, keyboards, phones, nets, handbags, hosepipe and more.
All scrap has been checked over before use and will continue to be regularly checked over and topped up.

Two slideshows below tell the Scrap Shed story - the first one details the 'making of', and the second shows the children at play with the scrap from launch day.

Good Day Sunshine

DSCN0884We have been lucky to have day after day of dry conditions and lovely sunshine, enabling us to use lots of the site and have the top field open every day. Don't forget to bring in sun hats and apply sunscreen in the summer term!

This slideshow shows some of the fun we have been having in the sun in May and June!

Colourful creations

DSCN0398The warm weather has opened a new play opportunity for the children, with dry playgrounds serving as giant outdoor canvasses.
Semi-permanent painted playground markings are relatively expensive and, after an initial surge of interest on their arrival, tend to quickly wane in popularity due to their static nature and becoming 'part of the furniture'.

An alternative is provision of large playground chalks. A less expensive solution, chalks offer more open-ended creative opportunities for the children. Recent ephemeral art activity has included free drawing, giant floor murals, character creation and storyboarding, printing and blending. Children have also drawn their own games; some traditional versions such as noughts-and-crosses, others are brand new games, created and refined with friends during playtime.
One quick rain shower and the canvas is clean again!
Take a look at some of the recent arty activity in this Chalk Gallery.

Active Kids

StiltsThank you all for you support in collecting and returning Sainsbury's Active Kids vouchers. The scheme has now closed for 2015 and we have sorted and counted all the vouchers - amassing a whopping 6810 points. A group of Junior Future Leaders have helped select a large list of items that we would like in exchange for our vouchers. The sporty shopping list includes foot-, net-, basket-, rugby and tennis balls, stilts, hoops, pompoms, rackets, scoops, skipping ropes, streamers, noodles, a kickflick and some brooms, plus a new pump and some bags to move the equipment around.
Many thanks to all who returned vouchers - the value of our 'free' equipment is over £320.


Head's Tweet

from Mr Ryan

'Thank you' to all those who attended and made the Open Morning today possible!

07 Nov 17 at 11:55am