Skills for life

Funding level: £5,001 to £10,000


“Let Nature be your teacher.” – William Wordsworth

What is Growing Together?
Halsford Park Primary School has a passion for holistic education and hope to place a greater emphasis on open-air education as part of our learning. We have a number of outdoor areas that, with development, would make excellent focal points for pupils to study multiple subjects outside; Forest School, Science, Geography, Art, Maths, English, Nutrition and more.

Why do we need Growing Together?
Children need to have access to their outdoor environment yet opportunities for children to value and enjoy nature are under threat. In an average month in 2013-14 only 8% of all children in England (aged 5-16) visited natural areas with their schools. *(Monitor of Engagement with the Natural Environment Survey)
Today’s society is challenged with a rise in childhood obesity, mental health issues, and the struggle to build a sense of place and community. This is undoubtedly connected to this drop-in access to the outdoors.

Why do we need funding now?
The plan is currently in its second phase. As a school community project, we feel it is vital to include the pupils, parents, staff and the wider community in every aspect of this development. It is a scheme designed to grow over the years with the children, as the school embraces an increase in outdoor learning.
At this stage we need to; clear overgrown areas, complete the outdoor learning area, replace old seating, start autumnal projects, and prepare for the winter (including shelter for birds and wildlife).

What will the funding be used for?
We need to purchase new tools and materials, make repairs, create wildlife areas, grow more plants in our kitchen garden, make a zen garden area and purchase forest school equipment and a sail canopy.

What could be the positive impacts of Growing Together?
‘Participation in exciting and enjoyable outdoor activities with teachers, youth workers and peers reinforces a positive attitude to education and contributes significantly to the general ethos of a school or youth group. Direct experience out of doors stimulates and reinforces learning across many areas of the curriculum, and the use of the outdoors encourages young people to take greater responsibility for their own learning‘ (English Outdoor Council)
A positive attitude to learning is essential if young people are to make the most of their education.
Studies (Natural England) show that giving children the opportunity to discover, learn and experience the natural world is hugely important. It creates a sense of belonging in their local environment, enhancing their health, behaviour, emotional wellbeing, intellectual and educational outcome, and aids children to develop a greater sense of connection to nature.

Who will benefit from this funding?
Halsford Park is a West Sussex primary school of 415 pupils. All pupils, staff and parents would benefit from this funding for Growing Together.
We are keen to open our gates to the wider community to involve them in sustainable living & lifelong learning. It will encourage respect between the generations & provide opportunity to witness the interdependency of the community as a whole.
Continuing Professional Development is important to the school and staff. This funding can help enable both formal and informal outdoor training for the staff across a range of topics and priorities. The school can run in-house staff CPD to bring people together and develop a shared understanding of the role that outdoor learning can play. This will also provide chances to form useful contacts and collaborate with other local schools.

Environment Minister (2016) Rory Stewart said:
We learn to love nature as children, and our commitment to nature later in life – respecting it, protecting it, restoring it, or simply enjoying it-is built on that childhood foundation. That’s why it’s so important we give all children the chance to experience the natural world.

Friends of Halsford Park

Moment of Pride

Halsford Park School is a caring and close-knit community that works together to foster confidence and Independence in our children. Staff and parents enjoy working together to provide a stimulating learning environment which we believe this project will greatly enhance.

Location: Manor Road, East Grinstead RH19 1LP, UK