Outdoor Learning

Durston House recognises the importance of learning through outdoor experience. The variety of outdoor areas at Durston House offers boys space to be active, to explore and experiment, developing physical skills, whilst still being able to play and have fun.

Much use is made of Castlebar Playing Field, our outdoor space, a brief walk from school. Different parts of the playing field offer a range of opportunities for boys of all ages. As well as having grass football pitches, it also has basketball and tennis courts, all of which are used for PE lessons, Games and break times. Physical strength and balance are needed on the ‘Monkey Bars’ and climbing frame. The woodland area provides great stimulus for imaginative play and learning about the environment. It is furnished with wooden huts and barked paving, which are ideal for insect habitats. ‘The Hump’, an undulating mound, under tree cover and covered in artificial grass, with an adjoining, flat, paved area, enables safe ‘rough and tumble’ play for boys who may not be keen on ball games. It is a part of the field greatly enjoyed by all ages, especially the younger ones, who have a small slide and tricycles available for their use.

Pre-Prep boys participate regularly in well-planned and structured activities known as ‘Field Lessons’. The lessons are based on The Forest Schools Programme. This programme advocates that all learners should have regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences, in a natural environment. The lessons are timetabled into the week and last for an hour. Activities include scavenger hunts, bark rubbings, natural collages and discovering habitats and gardening.