Oaklands College students build outdoor shelter for St Albans primary school

THE unpredictable winter weather will no longer deter outdoor learners at a St Albans primary school, thanks to the handiwork of local college students.

Mandeville Primary has been named a Forest School, which is designed to encourage and inspire children through positive outdoor experiences.

Pupils at the school in Mandeville Drive are fortunate to have a woodland area within the school grounds to help with their learning but the harsh winters have meant that activities during the colder months are often limited.

However the problem was solved when Steve Atherton from Oaklands College volunteered the services of the carpentry students to build a shelter for the pupils to use.

The students made use of recycled materials from recent building works at the school, as well as wood from a demolished barn in the college grounds and even a telegraph pole.

Angie Shipman, Forest Schools co-ordinator at Mandeville, said: “The end result is an amazing shelter which the children love and get so much use out of.

“It has become a special place where Forest School students can escape from the harsh elements but at the same time still be surrounded by the woodland and enjoy the feeling of being outside.”

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To coincide with the project, two new members of staff have also been trained as Forest School teachers to ensure that more children can enjoy the benefits of learning beyond school walls.

Lecturer in construction management at Oaklands Steve Atherton is pictured with year 2 pupil Reece and year 1 pupil Stella working on carving in the schools new outdoor shelter – photo by Krishan Bhungar, KKB_3348