Case Study: Old Dalby C of E Primary School

Old Dalby C of E Primary School

Hand Made Places were approached by Old Dalby C of E Primary School in Leicestershire. They wanted to convert a small area which originally housed two metal sheds, into a multiplay activity area where children could play, socialise and develop important skills. The play area which is situated between a sports field and an already existing playground area, would be accessed by pupils of all ages. This means that the range of activities installed needed to be both safe and enjoyable for children from aged 4 all the way up to age 11. Hand Made Places offered not only the best use of space for their budget, but their unique vision complemented that of the clients perfectly.

Each element of playground equipment that was installed aimed to target a different area of childhood development, allowing children to enhance their skills whilst they play. A ‘City’ Mini Micro World Table was installed along with both the ‘Woodland’ and ‘Ocean’ Finger Mazes. These pieces involve interactive intricate designs which help to develop children’s fine motor skills. Fine motor skills are associated with everyday tasks such as tying shoe laces, zipping up coats, and most importantly handwriting. Having these fun pieces of playground equipment situated within any playground is great as they both encourage fun and aid in important development.

Amongst the equipment which was installed was the Wrens Nest. This nature themed climbing frame encourages children to engage in physical activity, thus promoting a healthy and active lifestyle amongst children of all ages. One of Old Dalby’s key aims.

Hand Made Places also installed a range of sensory totems which aid in childhood development through enhancing their senses. Totems such as the Sound and Hearing totem encourage children to explore their surroundings through the medium of sound. These totems can be used in conjunction with science lessons in order to allow pupils to become more in touch with their environment. As well as providing key talking points for learning, these totems are fun for children to use during their play times.

Amongst all of this Hand Made Places also installed a Star Stage, this imaginative play apparatus allowed the pupils to express themselves, and explore their creative talents. By also installing a Sail Canopy over the top this allowed pupils the freedom to enjoy this apparatus without being affected by weather conditions, including extreme sun or even light rain. The Star Stage also marked yet another different type of play equipment which was installed within this area of limited space.

The area was placed on Hand Made Places artificial grass which not only optimised safety by providing impact absorbency, but also complemented the natural aesthetic of the surroundings. The client wanted a natural looking area which would blend well with the neighbouring field and they felt that Hand Made Places delivered this well.