Our OPAL Journey Begins!


Today was a very exciting day.

Our Play Team met together with Andrea (our mentor from OPAL) for the very first time! In the meeting, we assessed our current play opportunities at Archibald. Mrs Johnston showed Andrea around our school site, and then Andrea spent some time looking at what equipment we had to offer, as well as what our pupils like to do at play times. It made us very excited for Meeting Two where we will start planning the next steps!

You may be wondering a few things about OPAL and our play journey. Hopefully, the information below will help!

What is OPAL?
OPAL stands for Outdoor Play and Learning. It is a mentor-supported school improvement programme, that addresses all 18 areas that a school must plan for, if they want to sustainably improve the quality of play.

Why are we starting this journey?
As a school community, we hope to improve our pupils’ mental health and wellbeing. OPAL will provide us with lots of ideas and tools to improve these for all. After a turbulent few years which affected our pupils and families in a variety of ways, we aspire to move forward positively, ensuring our pupils have the best curriculum offer possible.

Where can I learn more?
Grownups, you’re in luck! There is a pack designed just for you so that you can read more about our play journey, and think about the value of play. It also offers advice for supporting play around the home. It can be found here.

We agree with OPAL – play is an essential part of childhood, and children should have lots of great play opportunities at school and at home. We can’t wait to bring you on this journey with us!