Our project aims to transform the outdoor playing areas at Sacred Heart Primary school, New Malden. The school welcomes nearly 400 pupils through its gates each day. It currently has two concrete playgrounds, with just two small pieces of climbing apparatus.
There is no grass in the playing areas, no seating for the children, no shelter, little play equipment, and nothing to challenge them physically, or encourage them to interact with others.
In today's digital world where childhood obesity is an ever-increasing issue, we'd love to transform our children's play area to make physical activity fun, challenging and above all something they can't wait to partake in!
The plan is first to extend the playing area by moving part of the fence and a gate to a different location. With more space available, we would like to:
1. Create a greener and more natural environment to help improve the children's emotional well-being by:
a. Installing artificial grass in one area
b. Create a gated 'Nature spot' with a fish pond, trees, plants and quiet space
c. Plant a vegetable patch
d. Create a sensory area
2. More opportunities for social interaction with:
a. A grass-covered amphi-theatre for children to shelter under, eat their lunches in, and enjoy some
classroom time outdoors
b. An interactive blackboard on one of the building walls
c. Murals on walls
3. More varied opportunities for participating in physical activities by:
a. Purchasing a range of apparatus and play equipment
b. Installing a climbing wall on one of the buildings
c. Installing basketball nets
d. Relaying the old AstroTurf on the MUGA
e. Investing in new sports equipment
Like all state schools, Sacred Heart faces ongoing funding cuts. We will only be able to undertake this project with support from outside funding. Any funds contributed could have a real, positive impact on our children and on the local area. Encouraging participation in physical activity and sport can only help to improve our children's physical and mental well-being which, in turn, will make the local population a happier and healthier one, and reduce their dependence on local health services. Furthermore, enhancing the physical appearance of the outdoor spaces at the school will create a nicer environment for the local community and will make the children and their families even more proud of the school they attend.