Castleton kids encouraged to step outside

a NEW project at Castleton Primary School is all set to get the pupils back into the great outdoors.

GOAL!, which stands for Get Outdoors and Learn, is a community project, organised by the school, which will see the pupils learning about their local environment in a series of Forest School activites.

Teacher Caroline Barber said: “It’s a project to get the kids outside as there are far too many children who aren’t allowed to play outside any more, which is a real shame.

“It’s all about getting outdoors, having a love and respect for the environment, and also includes a lot of team-building and trust exercises.

“A lot of research has discovered that once children are outside their sense are more stimulated and it makes it easier for them to learn.”

The school received a grant of £9,000 from the Big Lottery Fund for the project, which will take place between a local Castleton woodland and in specially designed areas on the school grounds.

Miss Barber added: “So far we’ve used the funding to develop the areas on the school grounds.

“What we’ve tried to do is recreate on our school grounds a woodland environment.

“We have the use of a private woodland in Castleton, but sometimes it’s not appropriate for us to go to it, so we’ve recreated a forest setting here.

“But it’s not just for the school, it’s for the whole community and other groups are invited to get involved.”

The scheme is officially launched in March, but Castleton school hosted an introductory meeting last Wednesday evening to inform parents about the project.

The presentation spoke of how the North York Moors National Park had got involved, and how other schools and groups will benefit from the project.