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St Peter’s Cross Keys Church of England Academy, Farndon, leads the way for outdoor learning


By Connor Thompson


A primary school is leading the way in outdoor learning.

St Peter’s Cross Keys Church of England Academy, Farndon, which already has a range of outdoor learning facilities, has added a new reading circle.

The school has expanded its outdoor learning spaces after studies revealed children could develop a lifelong love of nature and care of the environment while learning in a space that promotes self-esteem and wellbeing.

Pupils from St Peter’s Cross Keys Academy, in Farndon, are benefitting from outdoor learning (14277977)
Pupils from St Peter’s Cross Keys Academy, in Farndon, are benefitting from outdoor learning (14277977)

Pupil Sophie Buckley, 7, said: “It’s nice because there is a nice white board to write things on if you are learning, and if you want to you can listen to a story or sit down and read on your own.”

Classmate Ava Rick, 7, said: “You get to chill out and read stories and I have loads of big books at home I like reading. Reading outside is nice. It is peaceful and there are birds cheeping in the trees.”

The reading circle is the latest addition to the learning outside of the classroom scheme, which has seen the school install a tepee, a woodland area, and a willow holt.

Pupils from St Peter’s Cross Keys Academy, in Farndon, are benefitting from outdoor learning (14277980)
Pupils from St Peter’s Cross Keys Academy, in Farndon, are benefitting from outdoor learning (14277980)

Head Mrs Liz Duffell said: “We are delighted with the refurbishment of an outdoor area, which has been transformed into a space for storytelling and imaginative play.

“Classes can use the area for a range of activities that will promote and develop the children’s use of language as well as provide a memorable outdoor area for reading, telling and listening to stories.

“The tepee is an exciting new addition to our outdoor willow holt, providing shelter for the children while they carry out a range of activities in this woodland area.

“The children love being inside and teachers have been using the tepee for activities ranging from singing and storytelling to mindfulness and relaxation.”

Pupils from St Peter’s Cross Keys Academy, in Farndon, are benefitting from outdoor learning (14277982)
Pupils from St Peter’s Cross Keys Academy, in Farndon, are benefitting from outdoor learning (14277982)


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