From Design to Reality Case Study


The project (which ran over 1.5 years) was to develop the long term Master Plan for the school site and to deliver phase 1. The key to success here was a school that is committed to using the whole process of “design & build” to engage the staff and children and to deliver hands-on practical and purposeful learning embedded within the curriculum.


Surveying , assessment and measuring


“It is amazing how everything she does with the children is part of the real design. She is taking the children’s ideas, really studies them and makes them into proper professional plans. I think it is very very good.” SMT comment quoted from Creative Partnerships Evaluation.

Many schools have a clear “wish list” already but most also need some additional support to explore new ideas, and to discuss the implications for how the site is used, (play and learning), maintained and managed. This project engaged the whole school community to develop the long term Master Plan through a series of workshops, modelling and experimental sessions. Phase 1 (prioritised democratically by the children) was to design and build the adventure/physical challenge area.

The photos give you a flavour of the work undertaken..and the quotes give feedback on the impact of this work.


Design and Experimentation


Building (thanks Touchwood!!)


“This whole project has exceeded my expectations. We wanted the children to have a voice , but they have had much more than that. Felicity has engaged them in the whole process, from site analysis, needs assessment and design, so they, and the staff too, now have a better understanding of “place” and the benefits of questioning and experimenting before making design decisions.”


Enjoying the finished adventure & den area

“The result is a purposeful, rich learning and play environment that we are continuing to develop. We have not had the grounds done TO us but WITH us and this process has made us work collaboratively, governors, staff, children, parents together.”

“It’s been brilliant working with Felicity because she has the knowledge to design and build outdoor spaces but also she takes the children along with her making them part of the whole process from designing to building. That’s a rare skill; it brings the children at the heart of the work.”

“For more about this story please click the “Model for Success!” article.

To develop your outdoor learning and school grounds get in touch
with Felicity on 07968 771582 or email

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