We are delighted to share that we are about to launch an exciting new project to make our play times even better at Trotts Hill, in conjunction with OPAL. OPAL has won the “best active schools’ programme in Europe” award and been cited in two Parliamentary Reports as outstanding. OPAL is working closely with Sport England to promote more active childhoods. We will be working in partnership with OPAL for the next 18 months and they will support us to deliver the programme.
"Play is freely chosen, personally directed, intrinsically motivated behaviour that actively engages the child. Play can be fun or serious. Through play children explore social, material and imaginary worlds and their relationship with them, elaborating all the while a flexible range of responses to the challenges they encounter. By playing, children learn and develop as individuals, and as members of the community" (Play Council 2001).
Our OPAL project has got off to a fantastic start this term. Our children have enjoyed being able to use to whole field to play and they have especially loved having all of the classes mix together. Mrs Hunter has been working very hard to sort through all of the donations we have received and she has created an amazing mud kitchen, which children from all classes have been busy cooking and creating in.
We are very much looking forward to the next phase in our project, which will include introducing small world, large construction and risky play.
To facilitate this project, we will be supported by FROTH to raise funds to buy resources and storage in the first instance. The OPAL project will transform playtime, benefit the whole school and have a positive impact on the community.
When our new shed arrives we will be asking for donations from parents and the local community. Loose parts are any materials that can be easily moved, combined, and incorporated into children's free play. The items we are looking for will enable us to enjoy a wider range of play experiences during playtime (see below for some examples):
Suitcases of any size and type
Anything on wheels/castors
Plastic milk crates
Briefcases, especially hard cased ones
Kitchen pots, pans, baking trays, worktables, wooden spoons, chopping boards
Tools like spades, trowels and brooms (no forks)
Tubes of various sizes and various materials
Buckets and watering cans
Fabric (large sheets/brightly coloured fabric e.g. old duvet covers)
Foam sheets / body boards
Noodles (the type you use in the swimming pool!)
Pegs (to help to set up dens)
We will use this webpage to keep you updated on our progress.