What makes Poplar Special
The Multisports Court
The "Multi" was opened on Friday 21 May 2004 in what was once an abandoned tennis court , one of a row of 5 occupying the space between Poplar's school field and Mostyn Gardens, our local park. There are now facilities for basketball, five-a-side football, netball, mini-cricket and ball games.Turning the old overgrown tennis court into a modern multisports area was a community project of Morden Baptist Church, (MBC) who were very keen to provide a place where local young people could play free of charge. It was the brainchild of Youth Pastor, "Beef" Frankland and is shared between the school, who have exclusive daytime use of it in term time, and the local community, who have free access from Mostyn Gardens at other times.The Multi is well used both during PE lessons and at playtime when KS2 classes use it on a rota basis.The bulk of the £93,000 cost was raised by MBC but the school also contributed to the total.
The Outdoor Classroom
Work began on the Outdoor Classroom in 2007, although it had been in planning for some time. The second of the abandoned tennis courts, next to the Multi-sports Court ,has now become a resource for both outdoor teaching and relaxation. Our Outdoor Classroom helps in many ways by providing:
- a quieter area for those who do not always want to play football or chasing games;
- a calming area for children who may feel like some ‘quiet’ time;
- shade for the summer months;
- an educational resource with the ‘growing’ area which will offer chances to grow our own produce;
- an outdoor teaching area, with seating for teachers to also use during the day;
- we can offer more opportunities for tabletop activities – reading, drawing, tabletop games such as dominoes and chess
The Memorial Garden
The Louise Thomas Memorial Garden: Louise, a pupil in Year 1, was killed in a car accident in 2002. The school community created the garden to remember her and celebrate her short life. The garden was created by members of the school community as a quiet outdoor area for both learning and relaxation. What was once an unused space, left behind when the school buildings were extended in 2001-2, is now a secluded, well-used garden area and has become a place where other pupils in our community can also be remembered.
The Wild Area
This is the oldest of our outdoor "extras". It is our very own nature reserve that was created nearly 20 years ago from the other three of the abandoned tennis courts. The tarmac floor of the courts was distressed and plants were allowed to grow wild. Over the years we have allowed the Wild Area to mature; the Local Authority Parks Dept. have helped to plant a wider range of trees and we have carried out minimal maintenance to paths and circulation areas. Of course, we use the Wild Area for science and environmental studies but it is also a useful place for art and literacy.
The School Allotment
Our School allotment was established three years ago by enthusiastic and knowledgeable school staff. It has gone from strength to strength and children from Yrs 4- Yrs 6 are all timetabled across the calendar year so that small groups take it in turns to have a regular weekly time working on the allotment. The school has won the highest possible RHS award for the allotment and the produce it has grown which is donated to the school kitchen and sold to parents.
The Foundation Stage Playground
This specially designed playground and learning environment was completed in March 2015. It includes a bike trail, a climbing frame, a large wooden wigwam shelter, grassed areas, a large sand pit and a tall grass mound and slide. The environment is designed to support children’s physical development as well as provide plenty of space for a variety of learning opportunities to take place.
We also have three halls –one large hall provides the perfect space for our drama productions which take place throughout the year – the Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 take part in performances at Christmas; our Years 3, 4 and 5 Drama club perform a special musical show in the spring term and then at the end of the summer term Year 6 perform in their own final school production. We also hold a special Musical concert for parents and members of the community in the spring term.
Our other middle sized hall is used for school dining, assemblies and PE sessions and a smaller hall has now become a designated Music studio.
We have two libraries –one for the older children situated on the second floor and one for the younger children on the ground floor. Children have access to the library every day and each lunchtime and also before and after school once a week.
There is also a new Art room set aside for specialist Art teaching and used by nearly all the classes throughout the school.