The great outdoors got it's name from somewhere
Outdoor learning allows your pupils to leave the classroom and discover and explore the outdoors.
Outdoor learning and education can include learning about nature, science, society and interactions. Outdoor education can include working in a team or alone, developing new skills, practicing social interaction and exploring pupil’s development. The intended outcome of outdoor education is to gain knowledge and understanding, attitudes and feelings, values and beliefs and social development.
Outdoor education provides a base for teachers to utilize the ideas of outdoor learning and bring them into the classroom. Children are more relaxed, more engaged and they realise that learning can be fun.
Some outdoor educational resources include Willow Tepeesand outdoor marking daisies. The Willow Tepees offer a fun retreat for younger children to engage in the natural environment, children can explore and experiment in the natural surroundings. Children can make dens and bring them closer to nature.
Outdoor learning is much more than sticking to the national curriculum – the social skills children develop should also be considered. Sharing, listening and speaking about the things the children are learning is beneficial and imperative for their social understanding.
Allowing children to explore and experiment with nature brings what they are taught in the classroom to life. If teaching about nature and flowers etc., then let the children go outside and see for their selves what you have been teaching them. Being outside offers you and the pupils a more relaxed environment and you may find the more introvert pupils will come out of their shell.
Outdoor learning doesn’t just mean taking your pupils to the school field; outdoor learning is defined by the spaces where students can experience familiar and unfamiliar phenomena beyond the normal confines of the classroom (University of Bath). Taking the students on trips is classed as outdoor learning. The most popular being the petting farm for the younger children and outdoor retreats for the older students.
Anything other than being in the classroom is fun for the children, breaking the daily routine and getting the children in the outdoors will enable them to learn and develop team work and social skills.