Halfpenny Lane School ESP Play Case Study

Halfpenny Lane School, West Yorkshire contacted ESP Play to help them develop their outdoor area to help encourage independent and inquisitive learning, with a huge emphasis on developing children's confidence and self-esteem.

School: Halfpenny Lane School

Location: Pontefract, West Yorkshire

Halfpenny Lane School is situated in Pontefract, West Yorkshire. The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) consists of Nursery for 3 and 4 year-olds and two Reception classes.

They follow the EYFS Curriculum and staff ensure that planning supports the children's needs, helps them to learn and extends their interests. One of their key objectives are for children to be independent and inquisitive learners. A huge emphasis is placed  on supporting children to develop their confidence and self-esteem, and to realise their full potential. Children are encouraged to explore and investigate, question and to develop their own ideas.

The school is part of the Pontefract Academies Trust. The Trust is a cross phase Multi Academy Trust comprising of eight schools: six primaries and two 11-16 secondary schools. They are a medium sized family of schools all located within Pontefract. They educate over 3500 children and young people across the town.

A part of the school improvement plan for 2020 was significantly invest in their outdoor play provision to help achieve their objective and continue to strengthen the teaching, learning and positive experiences within EYFS.

ESP Play were invited in by Pontefract Academies Trust to offer advice on how best to design their outdoor play area.  Creating a very natural look, it was important to provide open ended learning opportunities.  By using open ended products, it enabled the children to initiate their play and challenges, trigger extensive communication and language and allow every child to be independent choice makers.

Physical development was a key focus. Specific play equipment was selected to target gross and fine motors skills such as grip, upper, co-ordination and balance.

Also included are allotment planting beds, flower planting areas, den making, textured pathways and block paving roadway to help heighten the senses and encourage creative play. This fantastic design also includes an outdoor stage for performances, reading corners, a magnetic water wall to help strengthen problem-solving skills.  Wildlife has been integrated in to the play area design through the use of bird and ladybird boxes to promote discovery and curiosity.

If you’d like to enhance your school playground please get in touch. One of our Regional Managers would love to help you.