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St Nicholas Church of England Primary School

Outdoor Learning

 At St Nicholas School we are lucky enough to have extensive grounds at our disposal as well as having access to natural spaces nearby. Teachers are encouraged to make use of these grounds when delivering the curriculum and Forest school sessions run regularly for our younger school members. In addition, across the school all children go on school trips and there are several residential opportunities organised by the school for pupils at Key Stage Two.


Outdoor Learning

 Our Aims

At St Nicholas School we aim for every child to …

  • Have experienced a wide range of outdoor learning experiences which foster the development of the ‘whole child’, particularly; their spiritual, mental, creative, social, emotional, physical and moral development and thus impact on an individual’s personal growth and mental well-being.
  • Increase their self -confidence, self -esteem and levels of resilience whilst partaking in first hand learning experiences out of doors.
  • Develop their teamwork, problem-solving and risk management skills in order that they may successfully tackle new challenges in later life.
  • Show a growing respect for the natural world and the creatures who live there.
  • Have developed a positive attitude to outdoor learning, challenge and adventure enabling them to wish to continue to spend time out of doors into adulthood.
  • And have had opportunities to feel the joy, awe and wonder the natural world can evoke.


Teaching and Learning

At St Nicholas all staff adhere to the agreed Teaching and Learning Policy. In addition, the following is in place:

  • Outdoor lessons are an integral part of the EYFS curriculum with children spending time out of doors in most weathers across the seasons
  • Each year group across the school to have at least two outdoor activities, other than PE run by their class teacher which links to curriculum or class needs. This might be a part or full lesson depending on the activity.
  • Each year group having least one outing year to a visit a venue offsite which supports and extends classroom learning.
  • Children in Key Stage Two have an annual residential which incorporates and promotes outdoor learning.


School Overview

Forest School Lessons and Outdoor Adventurous Activities

Year Group Autumn Term Spring Term Summer Term 
Reception Out in The Dark An Introduction to Fire Safety Minibeast madness!
Year One  A Christmas Adventure! Making a Group Fire Exploring Trees
Year Two Five Minute Fires Help the Easter Bunny Find His Eggs! What is a Nature Reserve?
Year Three  Sayers Croft   Overnight Camp
Year Four High Ashurst/ Get Set 4 PE- OAA unit    
Year Five    Isle of White Get Set 4 PE- OAA unit
Year Six      PGL

Outdoor Activities to Support Class Learning

Year Group Autumn Term Spring Term Summer Term 

Exploring the School Grounds
Autumn Fun

Exploring Winter
Leap into Spring
Growing Plants

Observing Minibeasts
Fairy Fun
Wet and Wild Day
Year One Environmental Sounds and textures
Seasons -Autumn
Road Safety
Seasons -Winter/Spring
Planet Orb
Naming Common Plants
Year Two Materials Everywhere Hot and Cold places around our school
What lives in our school grounds?
Growing plants in different conditions
Zambian Games
Year Three Andy Goldsworthy -Sculptures
Mammoth Hunt 
Exploring Shadows
Standing Stones
Banksy- Graffiti Art
Investigating how fertilizers affect plant growth
Carnival Time
Year Four Get Set 4 PE- OAA unit
River Safety
Freezing and Melting
Code Making with Runes
Sound Investigation
Protecting our Environment- Litter Survey
Year Five Shadow Clocks
Parachute designs
Exploding Volcanos
Get Set 4 PE- OAA unit
Growing plants from parent plants.
Year Six Place Value Out of doors Investigating Pulse Rates Managing Stress by using the out of doors- SATS Picnic
Science Fair for rest of school