Pupils at St Swithun’s Junior School, Winchester regularly use the school’s extensive Hampshire grounds for outdoor learning but last week on global ‘Outdoor Classroom Day’ there was an even greater emphasis on using their natural environment as an integral part of their learning.
In a maths lesson Year 4 were building on work they had done earlier in the week when practising column addition. The girls really enjoyed making place value charts out of sticks and using stones, leaves and conkers to represent the answers to 3-digit addition sums they were given. They practised subtraction by expanded decomposition and represented their answers in the same way. They finished with some problem solving around the maximum number of natural resources they would need to show both the sum and the answer to any 3-digit subtraction.
Years 3 and 5 worked outside on team building activities which formed part of their PSHE (Personal Social and Health Education) curriculum. Some teams tried to create particular shapes with a piece of rope whilst blind-folded whereas others were tasked with working out how to lift a bucket from the middle of an imaginary minefield without stepping into the field or dropping the bucket.
Reception classes enjoyed some woodland artwork by working in pairs to find their art resources in the form of twigs, conkers and leaves and then discussing and creating pieces of transient artwork together.