The Nursery Garden
We have a pretty and secure garden, situated next to the old orchard, which offers us an abundance of wildlife and insects including butterflies, birds, and squirrels. The garden is divided into two areas, both suitable for all aspects of play and learning. Both areas are laid to all weather lawn which are available throughout the year for all types of activities, incorporating a willow yurt, which is ideal as a place for imaginary play or quiet reflection.
These areas are ideal for riding bikes and trikes and this is also the location of our Mud Kitchen, log pile, tyres, mark making table and water trough. We also have an area where we try our hand at gardening, growing a small selection of flowers, herbs, fruit and vegetables, thus encouraging the children to be aware of nature, the environment, seasons and how things grow.
Research has shown that playing outdoors and in nature provides balance and physical wellbeing; therefore we feel it is important for the children to access the outdoor environment throughout the day. Our Nature Craft room also offers the perfect opportunity to extend outdoor learning. We recognise that children learn in many different ways, some are outdoor learners and we therefore like to use our garden as an open-air classroom. We try to provide opportunities for the children to extend their learning and continue to develop their bodies as well as their minds. This enables them to develop muscles, spatial awareness and self confidence and take supported calculated risks, doing so in an environment which provides learning opportunities that mirror those which take place indoors.
In the area just outside the Nature Craft room we are lucky enough to have a wonderful large sandpit, which is very popular with children of all ages and provides hours of fun. There is an additional outside space off the main playroom offering another location for fresh air and play. We are fortunate to have, within a couple of minute’s walk, a large village park which gives us the bonus of extended outdoor amenities. This has been the venue for ‘Bear Hunts’; picnics and nature trails. We also occasionally like to visit the canal to look for ducks and boats.