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Being a beach school

One of the many things that helps us stand out from all of the other schools in our area is our ‘Beach School’ status. In 2014 the school became the first in West Sussex and one of only a handful of schools nationwide, to become a beach school and with one of the country’s finest beaches only a short walk away, it is no wonder that the beach is such an important part of our curriculum.


The aim of beach school is to teach, encourage and inspire pupils with an educational approach to learning in a beach setting, whatever the weather. The positive benefits of outdoor learning are becoming increasingly recognised as impacting on all areas of children’s learning and development. Pupils not only come away with the educational lesson learnt, but often with increased self-confidence and self-esteem through experiencing new and challenging activities. They also learn to respect and protect their local environment, helping to safeguard it for the next generation.


Through pre-visits and thorough risk assessments we ensure that everything is done to minimise the risks involved in these activities, although we firmly believe that children do need, and benefit from, opportunities to take risks and make decisions in controlled situations.


Beach schools is studied by all classes from Reception upwards, so even our youngest learners take part. Each class will go approximately three times a half term, for half a day, so approximately 9 schools days a year are spent on the beach learning. Children arrive in school wearing their home clothes, wellies, coats (or sun hats depending on the weather!) and a big smile on their faces for beach school days. We visit the beach in most weathers and we never forget to take a big flask of hot chocolate and some biscuits, to help keep us warm and smiling. Our children really value beach school and the opportunities that it gives them. 

Some of the many activities that we do at Beach School are:
  • Mindfulness walks, discovering textures, sights, sounds and smells

  • Reinacting the first Roman landing with our very own Roman army invasion

  • Learning about fire safety by creating a beach fire as part of the Great Fire of London learning journey, and making s’mores with toasted marshmallows

  • Team building exercise of shelter building using materials found on the beach and from school

  • Creating a giant version of Stonehenge

  • Creating ‘story sticks’ for written work back in the classroom

  • Understanding the impact that humans have on the environment and on our local economy

  • Catching crabs and measuring their length, mass and gender for statistical analysis

  • Using hands-on approach to understanding number patterns and counting in mathematics

  • Building graphs and analysing results using beach finds

  • Learning about birds nesting and how they use the stones at the beach as nesting spots

  • Discovering how a volcano works and building a giant volcano model

  • Looking at coastal erosion and how we can reduce the impact that the sea has on the beach

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