DHL volunteers build the first inland beach school
Thanks to the efforts of 20 volunteers and a £10,000 grant from Transform It! a former flooded playing field at the Brooke School, Rugby has been transformed into an all-purpose multi-sensory beach school – a place where students can experience den building, cooking, sensory learning, pond dipping and rock scrambling.
The newly transformed beach was unveiled on Saturday 15th October by former British Lion, England and Leicester Full-Back Tim Stimpson, and the Mayor of Rugby, to the delighted 300 strong school and local community gathering.
Nathan Thomas, DHL HR Business Partner, was awarded with the “key to the beach” by the School in recognition of his hard work in making this project a reality.
“Transform It! has really lived up to its name. This has been a very ambitious project, which was made possible by the collaboration of a number of different businesses. The DHL UK Foundation has helped to bring the seaside to the Midlands! Brooke School has 166 pupils, all with special needs. Brooke is about helping each student to achieve their full potential. I am proud to have been a part of this project and that Transform It! has helped us to bring some magic into these children’s lives, many of whom have never been to the beach, and provide the legacy of an enriching future learning experience.”
The area, which is bigger than a basket-ball court, contains 4 different types of beach together with a Blackpool Centenary Tram, number 643, which will provide lots of different uses, including an outdoor classroom. Head Teacher, Chris Pollitt said, “Children always learn best when they play, and they learn even better when they play outdoors, so the Beach School will enable our children to learn life skills in the wider world. Thank you to everyone who has made this possible, especially the DHL UK Foundation, Colas Rail and Tesco Groundworks.”
Saturday 15th October welcomed the whole school commu nity to celebrate the beach and say a big thank you to all the people that have made it happen. Overall it was attended by more than 300 people. Visitors enjoyed an ice cream, coconut shy, Brooke School Sticks of rock, grab a duck, giant jenga, treasure hunt, rock scramble, comedy photographs, sandcastle competition or just a deck chair !
The beach will be used for active, practical and flexible learning. This will help the students to develop creativity, confidence and imagination as well as promoting their exploration, investigative, physical and problem solving skills. Pupils will be involved in maintaining, developing and respecting their environments in this magical new transformed space.
Please see the video on the school website http://www.brookeschool.co.uk/The-Beach