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Conference Programme 2023



14 Nov 2023
Stage 1

Design & Educational Approach to Woodland View School
Chris Boyle, McLaughlin & Harvey Construction, Paul Don, East Dunbartonshire Council & Kevin Cooper, Norr Architects

Woodland View is a merger of EDC’s two ASN schools with pupils from 2-18. Campsie View caters to pupils with severe to profound learning and medical needs, while Merkland School caters to pupils with predominately mild to moderate learning disabilities.

Both schools undertook an interactive learning and discovery process to fully understand the needs of future pupils. Utilising the shared learning of each school, the design approach sought to create a building where every user could access education within an environment suited to their specific needs. Additionally, it was important to eliminate any physical or emotional barriers that the new building may have presented through considered design and dialogue with end users.

There were concerns regarding the two-storey building design, especially for pupils with more profound needs. However, rather than choosing to segregate those pupils entirely to the ground floor, the design instead mixed various class types throughout the building, the first of its kind, to fully integrate the campus as a collective. To help integration, Abertay University students created an interactive computer game with the pupil’s input to aid the transition. The design was a challenge to deliver a building that was fully connected not just educationally but ensured an inclusive approach for all.

Looking beyond typical access solutions, the sensory trail was conceived as an experience that could be shared by all users. Gently ramping from the ground floor around the main social spaces to the first floor, the sensory trail not only provides another route for pupils to circulate but also offers an interactive sensory experience that the users can evolve throughout the years.

Woodland View is truly a building full of connections; from the educational philosophy to create shared experiences, to the freedom of moment and discovery, it is a building full of choices.

Outdoor Play Pedagogy in Early Childhood Education – Spaces, Experiences and Interactions
Mairi Ferris, Thrive Outdoors Fund Manager & Melodie Crumlin, Inspiring Scotland

Inspiring Scotland is committed to the ambitions set out in Scotland’s National Position Statement on Outdoor Play and Learning.

This presentation will showcase two areas of our work ; Outdoor Community Play ASN pilot and Willow Den Outdoor Nurseries.

Participants will gain understanding of these projects through discussion and film and resources produced by the children and pilot charities will be shared at the conference.

Inspiring Scotland’s Thrive Outdoors team is funded by Scottish Government to administer the Outdoor Community Play fund, supporting 33 charities to deliver free community outdoor play in Scotland’s most deprived communities. Five of the charities, in diverse settings, have been piloting inclusive and accessible outdoor play with children who have additional support needs (ASN) and their families. The settings include a residential school, open access neighbourhood provision, a woodland setting and an adventure playground.

Founded by Inspiring Scotland, Willow Den offers fully outdoor nursery provision for children aged 3 years and not yet at primary school. Play is the medium through which children explore, create and expand their knowledge and understanding of the world around them.

Willow Den furthers the work of Inspiring Scotland’s Thrive Outdoors Team who are working with communities, charities, schools, outdoor organisations and public bodies to support collaboration, innovation and development in outdoor play and learning, sharing best practice and supporting research to promote better understanding of the importance of outdoor play.

Outdoor play is a life-enhancing experience and together we want all of Scotland’s children to thrive outdoors.

Maxine Booth, Quality Improvement Manager, Learning Estates, Education and Children’s Services - Aberdeenshire Council
Chris Boyle, Framework Director - McLaughlin & Harvey Construction
Paul Don, Team Leader – Major Assets Projects - East Dunbartonshire Council
Kevin Cooper, Director - NORR
Mairi Ferris, Thrive Outdoors Fund Manager - Inspiring Scotland
Melodie Crumlin, Thrive Outdoors Fund Manager - Inspiring Scotland
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