CHILDREN at a Westhoughton primary school have a love of learning inside and outside the classroom.

Eatock Primary School has been awarded the Gold Award for Learning Outside the Classroom for the second time.

The award recognises the school's commitment to bring learning alive outside the classroom, through activities in school grounds, to visits to local parks, museums, sacred sights and many other places.

And Eatock is the only school in Greater Manchester to currently hold the Gold award.

Rob Lackenby, the school's outdoor education lead, said: "Children learn in different ways and everyone in the school believes that taking learning outside the classroom helps our pupils to achieve their potential as it supports their academic attainment, personal development and health and well-being by bringing the curriculum to life and making their learning meaningful."

The school has developed outdoor learning spaces including a performance stage, extensive wildlife area, ponds, mud kitchens, outdoor design technology areas.

There is also a bird hide, outdoor classrooms, a reading shepherd’s hut, community garden and early years ‘caterpillar garden’ which includes a large climbing tree, water fun area, physical phonics area,a large sand pit and a mud kitchen.

And say the school, the children spend so much time learning outside that waterproofs and wellies have become part of the school uniform policy.

Eatock is also a School Direct Lead school which trains the next generation of teachers.

Rebecca Green, the School Direct lead said: "Many students are attracted to join our school direct programme because of the learning outside the classroom’ experiences they gain during their training which enhances their employability once they have completed the course."

The school says it believes children learn everywhere and anywhere, and the award is a recognition of the of the hard work that' everyone in the school' has put in to creating a 'fully inclusive outdoor curriculum'.