OPAL (Outdoor Play and Learning)

The Outdoor Play and Learning (OPAL) Primary Programme is a mentor supported school

improvement programme. It addresses all of the areas schools must plan for if they want to

strategically and sustainably improve the quality of their play opportunities. The OPAL Primary Programme is the only programme of its kind that has been independently  proven to sustainably improve the quality of play in British primary schools.

Research shows that play contributes to children’s physical and emotional health, well-being,

approach to learning and enjoyment of school. Given the importance of play in children’s lives and current concerns about children’s health and opportunity to access time and space to initiate their own play outdoors, there are considerable benefits for children, parents, school and the wider community from participating in OPAL's programme.

The OPAL Primary Programme supports schools in developing a cultural shift in thinking about and supporting children’s play. 





OPAL and Bede Burn

At Bede Burn, we encourage and provide opportunity for our children to immerse themselves in the world of outdoor play and learning.  We recognise the value of play and the benefits it can bring to learning and happiness. During lunchtimes our children can:-

  • Let their imagination run wild in the dress-up area
  • Let their inner actor or singer emerge on our custom-built stage with space for an audience
  • Be as creative as they like in the arts and crafts area
  • Immerse themselves in small worlds with our collection of small world toys
  • Scoot around the yard with their friends on ‘Wheely Wednesdays’
  • Practise their baking and cooking skills in our wood-chip kitchen
  • Scoop and create constructions in the sand pit.

Our OPAL provision is ever-evolving … look out for tyre mountain and a wildlife zone coming soon.