Message from Head of Pre-Prep – 21st May 2021

Senior School
21 May 21

What do we all think of this weather?

For me, it does require a spot of positive thinking and enthusiasm, as my preference is very much for the sunshine, especially as we emerge out of the winter months. Who would have thought we would be halfway through the month of May, still having these cold, windy and rainy days? So, my message today will hopefully inspire you to continue heading outside for a breath of fresh air and a good stomp in the woods at the weekend.

As someone who works with the younger ages at SVPS, the weather doesn’t affect our day-to-day school life; we just need to make sure the children have coats, and we, as teachers, have an umbrella as we all head out for playtime. For our EYFS children, who spend most of their day going inside and outside, life continues as normal. But, on our return to the classrooms, we all feel better, with clear heads and ready for the next part of a day of learning.

Why is fresh air and outside play so important? We are all well versed in the fact that outside play is such an essential part of childhood. I am sure that, as adults, we can remember our own childhoods and we understand how important it is for children to have these opportunities to run, climb and explore freely. I have noticed, during Nursery playtimes, a few of the older Nursery age children have taken to picking daisies and buttercups, gathering leaves or creating pictures of houses with sticks – artist Andy Goldsworthy would be proud! This demonstrates that outside exploring doesn’t always have to be running and hectic; it can also be calm and peaceful, providing an opportunity to connect with nature.

Children need to have this everyday connection with nature, and it is our job to ensure they have this exposure. This in turn naturally helps self-discipline, concentration and behaviour. Research over the years has shown that ‘children who spend more time outdoors show improved self-esteem and reduced feelings of depression, anger, and tension. In fact, the fresh air along with the soothing atmosphere of trees and plants can actually be quite calming for children.’  We have found that when we go outside with our children, it does release the pent-up energy that has been collecting over the course of the day; allowing us all to ‘recharge our batteries’.

I hope I have inspired our families to keep going with the family walks or even just opening the back door and sending the children out to explore their gardens!

I am sure the sunny days will make an appearance very soon and when they do, I hope everyone will take full advantage. In the meantime, enjoy a breath of fresh air with your little people and enjoy the rain on your face, knowing it is having a positive impact.

Miss McCarmick, Head of Pre-Prep