• i2o & POCCA team

Top schools for outdoor learning shortlisted in the Pocca™ Awards

After a large number of entries, the top educational settings for outdoor learning have been announced in the 2018 Pocca Awards shortlist; with the sector and the general public now encouraged to cast their votes online for free at

The Pocca Awards, developed by outdoor canopy provider i2o Ltd, were launched this year to recognise and reward those educational settings using available outside space to inspire students and enhance learning.

Schools were invited to demonstrate their outdoor learning approach and highlight how innovative and creative they have been in utilising their outside space in four distinct categories.

After being whittled down to the best of the best, the Pocca Awards are delighted to announce the 11 schools and nurseries that were shortlisted by an independent judging panel.

The following schools were shortlisted in the four award categories:

1. Active Learning Outside: how outdoor learning space encourages physical activities outside such as balancing, PE, Games, Sport and Play.

Category Shortlist:

· Ridgeway School , Deansway, Warwick

· Saxton Mount School, St Leonards on Sea, East Sussex

· Mother Goose Nursery, Greendale, London

2. Creative Learning Outside: how outdoor learning areas are used to encourage creative activities such as Art, Music, Drama, Crafts, Food Technology.

Category Shortlist:

· The Red Squirrel Children’s Nursery, Liff, Dundee

· The Red Squirrel Children’s Nursery, Glendoick

· Joseph Paxton Campus, Wirral

3. Core Learning Outside: how outdoor learning areas enhance educational activities in core subjects such as English, Maths, History, music and reading.

Category Shortlist:

· St Martins C of E Primary and Nursery School, Exeter

· Eastfield Nursery School, West Midlands

4. Environmental Learning Outside: how an outdoor learning area supports environmental focuses such as nature activities or core subjects such as Science, Biology and Geography.

Category Shortlist:

· The Oaks Day Nursery, Selly Oak, Birmingham

· Kidz@work, Sheffield Business Park

· South Molton Community Primary School, North Devon

Speaking about this year’s shortlist, Managing Director of i2o Limited Robert Carpenter said: “We are champions of outdoor learning and we know schools are too. Over the last 20 years, we have worked with schools across the country and continually see how passionate schools are about outdoor learning and the impact this has on students. We’re proud to support the sector and to develop the Pocca Awards programme to recognise the outdoor learning efforts and achievements of UK schools. The schools on this shortlist are a fantastic example of how educational settings are making the most of their limited resources in order to truly enhance their student’s learning experience.”

i2o Ltd relaunched the trademarked brand name Pocca to the schools market in September 2017, to represent the canopy structures designed for the schools market. Pocca stands for Permanent Outdoor Covered Curriculum Area.

The Pocca Awards were open to any educational setting based in the UK that could demonstrate its outdoor learning excellence; with or without a canopy area. Nominations were received from across the country and entries closed on the 9th March. An expert judging panel reviewed the entries and determined the shortlist. Online voting to choose an eventual winner in each category closes on Friday 30th March 2018 and winners will be announced on Wednesday 18th April 2018.

Interested schools that are keen to put themselves forward for a future Pocca Award can find out more on the dedicated Pocca Awards website. Further Pocca Awards announcements will also be available throughout the voting period from Pocca social media profiles on Twitter and Facebook.

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