St John’s Mead send ‘thank you’ cards to ESP

ESP were pleasantly surprised to receive a handful of hand made cards made by the children at St John’s Mead Church of England Primary school in Bristol where we recently fit an Octagonal shelter with Sides, Seats and Decking. There were smiles all round when each member of the team involved received an individual, personally addressed card to place on their desk. Here are some of the artistic front covers of the children at the school.

According to the children, the octagonal shelter proved to be a very useful piece of play equipment during their Olympic Scavenger Hunt in which they used the shelter as a base to shield them from the rain. The shelter is one of our most popular and well received products. Its attractive styling, durability, quality and size make it a favourite item in primary schools, high schools, SEN schools and nursery playground development projects.

The Octagonal Shelter with Sides, Seating and Decking

Our Octagonal Shelter with Sides, Seating and Decking is the ideal way for schools to create a sheltered outdoor seating area. With seating for up to 25 children and enclosed side panels, this excellent piece of playground equipment is ideal for use before, after and during school hours and also doubles up as an outdoor classroom. The decking allows the shelter to be placed anywhere within the school playground and provides a solid, clean surface all year round. The Shelter is the perfect solution for taking the curriculum outdoors whilst maintaining a functional classroom environment and can even be used as a waiting area for parents or a relaxing getaway for teachers. Suitable for year round use, it provides a shaded place for children to sit during Summer and a great hide-out during those Winter months.


Positive Reviews of Our Science CPD Training Program

ESP have recently been collecting Evaluations for our Science CPD training programs and playground equipment and the results have been very positive.

Our science CPD training includes a range of activities based around our science play equipment which teachers can apply to curriculum based learning. Our experienced and enthusiastic staff have been praised for their excellent delivery and useful lessons. The teacher training programs are recognised by a range of national agencies who all agree that these programs deliver useable and effective practical examples. Each training session maximises play, physical activity and outdoor learning across the 4 core curriculum subjects and makes use of every piece of science playground equipment.

Comments on our CPD Science Training Program

Here are some of the comments from our recent visit to Tyne View Primary in Newcastle:

“Superb Delivery – Thought provoking and refreshing. Thank you”

“Very Enthusiastic, great presentation”

“This has been valuable training and I will use it in all my lessons, not just science”

Science playground equipment

Our Science Play range includes a number of different pieces of outdoor playground equipment designed to make the science curriculum more fun and physical. As well as a range of individual pieces we also offer a number of packages. These packages are designed to suit different sizes and budgets while offering the best combination of products. We may also put together individual elements for a bespoke package best suited for your needs. Our design team can advice you on the best way to incorporate the science play equipment into your playground development scheme. Click here for more info on our free playground design service.


Multi-Skills playground markings – a huge success

We’ve had a very successful summer on sales of our Multi-Skills playground markings.

Multi-Skills zones offer unique physical activities which implement fundamental movement skills amongst children. Fundamental movement skills include spinning, running, walking, side-stepping, balancing and more. As well as being perfect warm-ups for all sports, these skills are also useful in gaining confidence, physical activity and co-operation. Each product can be used in a number of different ways making them, unlike most single activity traditional markings.

Multi-Skills playground marking – unique to ESP

These markings are unique to the company and were designed based on extensive research and testing. For this reason, our packages include CPD (Continued Professional Development) training. The CPD training program offers an introduction to the markings and how they can all be used in a large number of ways. Curriculum based learning is also one of the main attractions to our multi-skills playground markings and our training programs include methods based upon this.

During research, we carried out a number of interviews to gain evidence of the impact of our multi-skills products. The results suggest the following:

  • Teachers’ knowledge and understanding of fundamental movement skills (FMS) and multi-skills have been further enhanced as a result of the ESP training programs, Opportunities to focus on these specific elements during PE lessons have also significantly improved.
  • The training and resources were very well received, particularly by the nonspecialist primary school teachers who felt more confident in the delivery of FMS in their lessons.
  • As a result of the markings and lessons, the pupils also had a better understanding of what FMS and multi-skills were and why they were important to physical activity, play, and sport participation.
More information on the research carried out by ESP can be found here.

See Our Multi-Skills Concept in Action



School competitive team sports move unveiled

Competitive team sports will be made compulsory for all primary school children in England, Prime Minister David Cameron has said.

A draft new curriculum this autumn would require participation in sports such as football, hockey and netball.

Mr Cameron has been urged to set out how he intends to secure a sporting legacy from the London 2012 Olympics.

Labour leader Ed Miliband has called on political parties to work together on a 10-year plan to boost sports activity.

‘Recognisable sports’

The prime minister has pointed to a £1bn fund for youth sport, but the government has been criticised for scrapping a target of two hours physical education a week for school children.

London Mayor Boris Johnson has called for two hours a day of compulsory sport.

Continue reading the main story

“Now the London Olympics has been a great success, we need to use the inspiration of the Games to get children playing sport more regularly”

David Cameron Prime Minister

Mr Cameron said earlier this week schools often saw the two-hour target as a maximum and told the BBC that Indian dance was being counted as physical education.

On Saturday he said the national curriculum for primary schools in England would be rewritten with an explicit reference to competitive team sports.

The new curriculum will make it compulsory to take part in “recognised and recognisable sports” and will set out requirements for “team outdoor and adventurous activity”.

Mr Cameron said: “The idea of an Olympics legacy has been built into the DNA of London 2012 from the very beginning.

“Now the London Olympics has been a great success, we need to use the inspiration of the Games to get children playing sport more regularly.”

‘Pursue dreams’

He added: “I want to use the example of competitive sport at the Olympics to lead a revival of competitive sport in primary schools.

“We need to end the ‘all must have prizes’ culture and get children playing and enjoying competitive sports from a young age, linking them up with sports clubs so they can pursue their dreams.

“That’s why the new national curriculum in the autumn will include a requirement for primary schools to provide competitive sport.”

But Philip Collins, a former speech writer for Tony Blair, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme Mr Cameron’s analysis was “about 20 years out of date” and the plans were “effectively reinstating” the Schools Sports Partnership programme – set up by Labour, and cut by the Tories in 2010.

He went on to say playing competitive sport for a school was “intrinsically exclusive” and it was “perfectly sensible to have lots of other physical activities for children who loathed PE”.

Damian Hinds, Conservative MP for East Hampshire, said competitive sport taught children “the power of a team, pushing yourself, and learning that life involves losing some things as well as winning”.

Under the last government, only two in five children took part in competitive sports within schools, with one in five regularly taking part in competitive sport with other schools, he added.

The National Association of Head Teachers has called for further investment in a wide range of school sports.

But it said the government should not seek to dictate the specific games that are played.

Russell Hobby, general secretary of the head teachers’ union, said: “London 2012 has drawn the nation’s attention to the sheer breadth of sports on offer and an enduring legacy would be to see the government promote these, thereby ensuring children enjoy participating at every level. The message is diversity.”


Source – BBC News


Why learn outdoors and use physical activity in Science?

Why learn outdoors and use physical activity in Science?

At ESP we recognise the importance of learning outside the classroom and have now worked with hundreds of schools delivering our concept. Below are a few questions we come across when discussing our concept.

• Why bother going outside of the classroom?

• Why bother using physical activity in Science?

• The weather’s too bad.

• It’s hard work managing the pupils – their behaviour changes.

• The class is too big!

 It’s worth it because…

• Learning through physical activity outside of the classroom enriches the curriculum.

• It can give children new and exciting experiences that might inspire them.

• It meets the needs for a variety of learning styles (VAK) and can re-motivate children who do not thrive in the traditional classroom environment.

• It supports improved standards back INSIDE the classroom, raising attainment, reducing truancy and improving discipline.

• Learning outside the classroom is known to contribute significantly to raising standards & improving pupils’ personal, social & emotional development.

• Learning outside the classroom as a regular part of their school life results in benefits such as increased self esteem and pupils becoming more engaged in their education both inside and outside the classroom walls.

• Children need to move – not just for the sake of their physical selves, but also for social, emotional and cognitive development; movement benefits the whole child.

• There is a positive association between children’s level of physical activity (or sport) and cognitive functioning or academic success.

 What do OfSTED say?

An evaluation report published in 2008 makes very clear that learning outside the classroom significantly raises standards and achievements. It also enhances young people’s motivation and levels of interest, providing real, exciting and enjoyable contexts.

Start working in partnership with ESP and bring this positive experience to your school playground.

Our CPD and teacher training department has a wide range of national expertise and is responsible for supporting all of our playground equipment and services, making them relevant and purposeful to the national curriculum. This ensures that every school working in partnership with ESP delivers sustainable change.


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Playground Equipment , Playground Equipment for Schools , Outdoor Learning , Outdoor Curriculum , School Playground Equipment , Outdoor Science , CPD , ESP Play


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