Out to Play
Primary School Residencies

The 5 week Out to Play residency is the most popular choice for primary schools looking to develop their provision of quality, creative outdoor learning experiences in their own school playground.

How Does It Work?

A Drama Artist from Eco Drama collaborates with a partner primary school over a 5-week period, working with the school on two days each week to deliver story-based, creative outdoor learning sessions for 6 classes and their teachers.*

Out to Play has a strong Continued Professional Development (CPD) element for Teachers, including CPD sessions, resource packs and staff-led sessions. Residencies are designed to ensure a lasting legacy with the advancement of staff knowledge, confidence and skills, empowering teachers to deliver arts-based outdoor learning and play for many years to come and have ‘Out to Play’ sessions become part of their school’s weekly timetable.

“A wonderful experience for the children and myself. A fresh look on how to develop Outdoor Learning in a more creative manner. Fantastic experience – thank you!”

Teacher, Corpus Christi Primary

*If the school wishes more than 6 classes to experience Out to Play, two or three residencies can be delivered alongside or following on from each other. Many schools in recent years have chosen this option, with residencies often spanning several seasons in a calendar year. Connecting across year levels and whole school communities through the 5-week model ensures deeper impact and exchange.

Eco Drama - Out to Play
Eco Drama - Out to Play

Session Content

Out to Play brings playground spaces to life through the arts and imagination.

The Drama Artist designs and delivers an interdisciplinary programme of imaginative outdoor learning sessions which apply the use of Drama and Storytelling techniques as learning tools. Sessions make connections across the 10 Eco-Schools Topics, UN Sustainable Development Goals and Curriculum for Excellence, with a particular focus on Learning for Sustainability, engaging learners emotionally and intellectually with this broad subject area through a ‘head, heart and hands’ approach. The Drama Artist plans sessions that are responsive to the needs and ambitions of each school, and tailors the content to the unique outdoor surroundings of each school playground, exploring it through imaginative play and creative, adventurous learning.

5 Week Programme

The 5 week programme borrows ideas from the 3 Out to Play Resource Packs and session ideas developed by Eco Drama during almost a decade of Out to Play residencies in schools across Glasgow. Sessions may cover subjects such as the Water Cycle, Animals, Waste Minimisation and The Web of Life and a typical Out to Play session includes elements of Drama, Storytelling and Nature Connection activities. All sessions nurture joy and love for nature through creative, outdoor learning.

Participating teachers receive copies of all 3 Out to Play resource packs as part of their CPD.

“The Out to Play experience was magical!! Each lesson focused on a different sustainability theme which included drama and storytelling. The lessons were delivered effectively and used a variety of props in order to bring the theme and learning alive.”

Out to Play 5-week residency, 2022
Eco Drama - Out to Play


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Watch our short documentary about Out to Play, filmed at various primary schools across Glasgow.


For full project information and availability for the current and next academic year, please contact Schools Project Manager Suzanne Prak-Sandilands – suzanne@ecodrama.co.uk or call 0141 552 9920

Eco Drama - pack launch

Feedback from Teachers

“Having the opportunity to work alongside such an experienced storyteller has been wonderful. I’ve now got loads of practical ideas to bring into the class and extend/continue to use outdoors. I’ve been really impressed by the way the children have engaged in every session. I’d be crazy not to continue the fantastic energy and enthusiasm.”

Teacher, Battlefield Primary School

“I think regular time outdoors encourages children to be creative and explore. I will definitely keep the routine going next year. Really enjoyed the experience. Loved the stories. The Drama Artist was great! This has been very worthwhile.”

Teacher, St Vincent’s Primary

“A number of parents have commented, during Parents Nights, on the children’s improved confidence and love of outdoors citing Eco Drama as a main driving force for this.”

Out to Play 5-week residency, 2022

“Out to Play has been a resounding success in our school. It has had a huge impact on our staff and pupils. The children are motivated and enthused by the approach and loved working with the Drama Artist. The joy on children’s faces in the playground is superb to see.”

Deputy Head Teacher. Dalmarnock Primary

Feedback from Pupils

“I have learned about nature and how it works. It was very fun too!! Thank you for taking us outside, I learned so much.”

Eni, P7 Pupil Corpus Christi Primary School

“Thank you for teaching us. This program has made me aware of nature and made me more confident and happy”

Aini, P6 Pupil St Vincent’s Primary School

“I really enjoyed the adventures!”

P3 Pupil, Aultmore Park Primary School

“Before I never liked going out to play. Now I love out to play.”

Lee, P4/3, Chirnsyde Primary School

“I go on adventures more through forests cause Sophie inspired me. I think about outside a bit differently now.”

Marcus, P7, Chirnsyde Primary School

“I liked the stories and games because it was really fun and the stories were amazing!”

Daniella, P4a, Battlefield Primary School

“I loved it because nature is what is inside me. Thank you for everything. It has been a delight.”

Leona, P4 Pupil, Balornock Primary School
Children hugging a tree