Create Climate Ready School Grounds with our new resources
Discover new resources to help you create Climate Ready School Grounds that double as inspiring environments for outdoor learning and play.
The Climate Ready School Grounds project worked with three schools across Scotland to develop workshops, school grounds surveys, and guidance, focusing on improvements across six technical areas. The resources are designed to help schools create Climate Ready School Grounds that double as inspiring environments for outdoor learning and play, engaging the entire school community and bringing climate education to life.
Schools at the heart of communities
The outdoor areas of Scotland’s schools are often at the heart of communities – seen and used daily for learning and play. They make up 14% of local authority-owned land in Scotland. However, 84% of that area is either grassland or hard surfaces, which are poor environments for our changing climate, biodiversity, learning, and play. Making adaptations here would mean visible and accessible changes for the whole community to see while creating inspiring spaces for learning and play.
The resources were developed following a year’s collaboration. The Climate Ready School Grounds project worked with three schools across Scotland, representing three very different communities and types of school grounds.
Learning through Landscapes and Architecture and Design Scotland facilitated workshops with the schools to help identify the impacts of climate change on the school grounds, along with practical ways to mitigate them. We were also able to learn about pupils’ knowledge and views on climate change.
During the year we also researched and collated related resources, connected with similar projects around the world, and learned about the role that landscape can play in mitigating a changing climate. This has helped inspire the learning resources that are now available to anyone involved in creating Climate Ready School Grounds.
Matt Robinson, Learning through Landscapes COO and Scotland Director, says:
It is clear from small projects and research across the globe that improvements to the school grounds shelter our learners from the worst impacts of climate change, and that the changes will also increase biodiversity, manage carbon and clean the air. These nature-based solutions offer deep learning opportunities and inspire our communities to take practical action in public spaces.
Jim MacDonald, Architecture and Design Scotland Chief Executive, says:
This project is exciting because it will provide practical examples of how schools can play a critical role in climate-conscious places. By developing the project in collaboration with schools, teachers, and Learning through Landscapes we are able to provide rich guidance on how to make our school grounds climate-ready and create more inspiring learning spaces.
Exploring opportunities for school grounds
The following video by Yellow Balloon Films sets out the opportunities for adapting our school grounds to tackle the climate emergency and create more inspiring learning spaces across the country. Visit the Climate Ready School Grounds page to learn more about the project.
Explore the Climate Ready School Grounds resources
The Climate Ready School Grounds resources for teachers and educators are designed to help schools adapt their outdoor spaces to mitigate the impacts of climate change. Visit the technical areas page to find guidance to support you in identifying and addressing issues in your school grounds, or download our surveys, workshops, and lesson ideas below.
If you are a landscape architect, designer, or local authority, please visit the Architecture & Design Scotland website to find appropriate resources to support you in creating and adapting school grounds to be more climate ready.
- Complete the Climate Ready School Grounds workshops with your pupils to create a plan for change in your school grounds, covering every step from surveying your outdoor space to implementing action
- Carry out the School Grounds Climate Survey with staff and pupils to identify issues in your school grounds
- Download outdoor lesson ideas related to climate change and biodiversity
- Discover guidance on the technical areas to support you in addressing issues in your school grounds
- Read case studies and action plans from schools and organisations involved in creating Climate Ready School Grounds
For press queries
For any questions about the resources or requests for interviews or images please contact Anja Ekelof, Communications Manager at Architecture and Design Scotland, or Matt Robinson, COO and Scotland Director at Learning through Landscapes.