STUDENTS at a Southampton primary school will be able to enjoy the great outdoors with the addition of a new learning area.

Oakwood Primary School’s pupils are a step closer to benefitting from the learning space thanks to a £1,000 donation from the Barker-Mill Foundation (BMF).

It will include a story garden which will double up as an outdoor classroom, bug shelters, bird boxes, seats and new equipment as well as new raised planters for the children to grow vegetables and herbs.

Students will be able to enjoy the outdoor learning space when it opens in November.

Acting headteacher at Oakwood, Maria Whitmarsh said: “We are very lucky to have a partially wooded site, but it is under used and we wanted to make the most of it and harness the transformational benefits of outdoor learning.

“We think our plans for developing each of the areas will really help our aim to be the best local school for our children and families.

“Work began on September 18 with clearing the Pond Quad, one of the projects the donation will enable. It had become so overgrown we were in need of urgent help. A fantastic team of volunteers from the Ordnance Survey came to our rescue and working all day they cleared the area. We had a few squeals at the jumping frogs but what a great start.”

Tim Jobling, BMF Trustee, said: “We underestimate how important outdoor learning is for children. It brings so many benefits not just to their health and well-being. It encourages their curiosity, to get outdoors in the fresh air and learn about the environment. We hope the children will enjoy many hours of fun learning.”