Barnes Junior School

Proud to learn, proud to achieve


What is OPAL?


Research has shown that children spend 20% of their time in school playing. To ensure that this time and our fantastic school grounds are used to their full potential our school has adopted an OPAL (Outdoor Play and Learning) philosophy that allows the children freedom to explore play in their own imaginative ways, often using found and gathered resources in the outdoor environment.

An OPAL approach promotes a more inclusive play environment in which all children can feel comfortable to express themselves. Through this approach to play children are not only more active at lunch or break times, but they are also having the opportunity to further develop life skills such as cooperation, team work and problem solving. They are becoming motivated and enthusiastic builders, engineers, explorers and designers.

Thank you for your support with:-

  • Sending your child into school with appropriate warm/waterproof clothing and shoes/wellies
  • Donating requested items for our play times
  • Supporting the OPAL ethos by asking your child about their play and accepting that they may get dirty

You can still help us more by donating any unwanted materials you have at home:-

  • Cable rolls
  • Plastic or metal buckets
  • Kitchen utensils, pots, pans, baking trays, sieves, colanders etc for the play kitchen
  • Watering cans, wheel barrows, guttering
  • Toy trucks, diggers, cars
  • Dressing up clothes
  • Small world creatures e.g. dinosaurs, farm animals etc.


​Thank you for your continued support.