Year 7 pupils have been taking advantage of the school’s green outdoor areas; they have been going outside at lunchtime, weather permitting, to enjoy the fresh air and play together.
Activities which the pupils have enjoyed include skipping, giant noughts and crosses, running and jumping and making a den inside a bush. It’s been an excellent chance for the children to connect with the natural world with endless opportunities for creativity and imagination, improved fitness and physical development.
Mrs Angie Holland, Year 7 Assistant Progress Leader, said: “We have noticed that the children playing outside appear more active, absorbed, motivated and purposeful, and have developed a more positive attitude. The children are less inhibited outside, and are more willing to join in with activities, talk and come out of their shells. Exercise also improves children's emotional health, allowing for relaxation and calmness and a heightened sense of well-being.”
“The Year 7 pupils are able to benefit from additional exercise which is an essential component of children's physical and emotional development,” commented Ms Diane Keary, Head of Year 7. ”Also research shows that physical activity improves children’s attentiveness and decreases restlessness.”
“Our society has become increasingly complex, but there remains a need for every child to enjoy the simple pleasure that comes from playing outside,” explained Mrs Fiona Minshall, Head Teacher at Saint Paul’s. “Regular opportunities for sustained periods of play in a rich and stimulating outdoor environment offer a wide range of physical and emotional benefits. The pupils are able to expand their imaginations, develop skills for seeing things through another person’s point of view--cooperating, helping, sharing, and solving problems; the countless benefits of outdoor play have a real positive impact on children's lives.”