Outdoor Play Policy
In St Mary’s Nursery School, we aim to use outdoor play as a learning environment throughout the year. We have free flow outdoor play every day.
The gates will be closed when the side outdoor area is being used. Children also have access to the play area in front of the building. Staff will carry out a visual risk assessment of the outdoor area and if any hazards are found they will be dealt with by them before the children are taken out.
The staff child ratio at St. Mary’s Nursery School when outdoors is 1:10. Staff members must monitor numbers and where necessary communicate with each other in order to increase staff numbers outdoors.
Children are encouraged to use the garden area independently. Staff will support children with this routine.
We ask parents/ carers to send their child throughout the year with suitable clothing and footwear to enable them to enjoy being outdoors. To help facilitate outdoor play, we request that each child has a change of clothing in their nursery bag. In sunny weather parents/carers are asked to apply sun cream to their child before coming in to nursery and to ensure their child has a sun hat with them. Sun cream will also be available in the nursery for application by parents/carers. The above procedure is the responsibility of parents/carers and not nursery staff.
Through outdoor play we aim to:
- Help children to care for the outside environment through the context of the outdoor area
- Enable children to develop an appreciation of natural beauty and a
sense of wonder about the world
- Respect the outdoor environment and to care for living things
- Include the outdoor area when planning for learning
- Ensure that children enjoy energetic activity outdoors and the feeling of wellbeing that it brings
- Observe, assess and record the learning that happens outdoors
- Ensure that the outdoors offers the children the opportunity to investigate and explore, problem solve, use their imagination and creativity
- Children to understand and follow nursery safety rules
*Amendment COVID – 19
All children will spend as much time as possible outdoors participating in high quality learning experiences.
Each group will have a designated outdoor area.
An outdoor sink has been fitted with hot and cold water and soap and paper towels available. Children and staff will wash their hands on entering the building.
Soap and water is available and should always be used rather than hand sanitiser. Staff should ensure enhanced hand hygiene measures are in place.
Hand sanitiser is also available for all children and staff.
Health & Social Care Standards: 1.25, 5.1
HGIOELC: 1.1, 2.2, 3.1, 3.3
EDC guidance for reopening ELC phase 3
Health protection Scotland non – health care setting guidance
Infection Prevention and Control in Childcare settings
NHS inform COVID – 19
Health and Social Care Standards
Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020