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Thursday, 11 October 2018

Free to Learn and Explore at Milford-on-Sea Primary School

At Milford-on-Sea Primary School they have a ‘Classroom without Walls’ approach to their learning and embrace the great outdoors as part of the rich and exciting curriculum. 

The school provides Forest Schools for all children from Reception to Year 4. The forest school philosophy is to encourage and inspire positive outdoor experiences and we provide this through our very own ‘Little Wood’ in the grounds of the school. Children have the opportunity to learn about the natural environment, how to handle risks and most importantly to use their own initiative to solve problems and co-operate with others. 

Younger students get creative
in MoS School ‘Little Wood’.
A typical afternoon in the ‘Little Wood’ might see children whittling wood, making miniature animal creatures out of clay, role playing in the ‘mud kitchen’, climbing trees, building dens and enjoying a hot chocolate by the campfire. It is no wonder that they wanted to extend this exciting curriculum and philosophy by offering Beach School to older pupils. 

Year 5 and 6 enjoy a
blindfolded sensory experience
on a blustery Milford Beach
Every week at Beach School, a group off Year 5 and Year 6 students spend their afternoon studying the coast, marine life and conservation. They are also able to link activities to curriculum areas like literacy, art, science and geography. Children enjoy paddling in the sea, creating sculptures from driftwood and foraging for interesting materials. Children have even started to make a ‘Beach School Museum’ collecting all the weird and wonderful things they find at MoS beach – which is serving to highlight the increasing problem of plastic pollution and waste in our oceans. An important part of the beach school philosophy is about sustainability and looking after our coastline. 

Children are taught to treat the beach environment with respect and to leave the beach as they find it. Each session always finishes with a litter pick to ensure that the children are giving something back to the community for their time on the beach. Beach schools is all about exploring and gives children freedom to learn in a wonderfully, stimulating environment. The fresh sea air and exercise has a positive effect on children’s well-being and self- esteem. The teachers often see a completely different child down on the beach, to how they are in the classroom. Beach school gives children the opportunity to be independent and assess risks for themselves. It is fantastic to hear children sharing advice on how to stay safe before embarking on activities, instilling them with the necessary resilience and skills to take on risk and challenge in their future lives. 

The school has been incredibly lucky with some fantastic weather so far this year but autumn is well on the way and the wind and rain is around the corner. You can be sure to still see the enthusiastic students in waterproofs and wellies, ready to embrace the ever changing beauty of our great outdoors! 

Beach School is looking for volunteers

If you have a free afternoon and would like to offer your time please contact: t.hussey@mosps.hants.sch.uk or call the school on 01590 642945.

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