At The Chalet School we have a wonderful school woodland garden. It is entirely fenced so the children have the chance to be free to explore, play and connect with nature. This helps them to build confidence and to understand their world. All activities in the garden are related to classroom learning.
Each term 2 classes spend half a day a week in the garden. This term Seahorse Class have been monitoring the weather, pond dipping and learning about the frog life cycle, planting seeds, building dens and having fun. Turtle Class have been exploring the world of mini-beasts, planting seeds and potatoes, hiding and finding, playing on the swings and balancing on the see-saw.
Our allotment area has been greatly improved with new more accessible raised beds, hard paths and a wonderful greenhouse/shed bought by a member of staff who raised the money by abseiling down a huge tower! This new greenhouse/shed enables the children to see the whole process of growing from seed to vegetable in a single place.
The old poly tunnel, which was given to us a number of years ago, was a bit too big and separate from the allotments. It has a new home with TWIGS - a horticultural therapy project in Swindon. In its place will be a wildflower meadow and orchard.
We love celebrating the seasons in The Chalet garden and had a whole (nearly) school celebration for May Day with lots of music and mayhem, singing and dancing around the May Pole tree and finding the green man pictures. Some lovely parents joined in the fun, helping to make it even more fun for the children, and best of all the sun shone!
The rest of the term will be spent sowing more vegetable seeds, harvesting cabbages and lettuce (and eating them!) and having picnics. Turtle Class will make honey sandwiches, Seahorse Class will bake rolls in the pizza oven and have them with herb butter, made from garden herbs.
We have a new Thursday lunchtime gardening club, anyone can come along. We have made chess caterpillars and sown a wildflower meadow and have lots more gardening jobs in store!
If you would like to know more about the Chalet garden project, please visit the following website - www.woodland-learning.co.uk.