Outdoor Classroom Day is a global movement designed to celebrate and inspire outdoor play and learning, both at school and at home. On November the 4th, we invite teachers to celebrate by taking special classes outdoors, inspiring children to enjoy their time in the fresh air.
Worldwide, children are spending less and less time outdoors. This is gradually affecting their health, wellbeing and development. Time spent outside will overall help children to become happier and healthier, and will equip them with important life skills.
Time outdoors is good for your health. The benefits of fresh air and sunlight, even in limited amounts, are well known and proven. Quite apart from any tangible and measurable health benefits, time outdoors can also make you feel better. Fresh air is restorative, and can help you concentrate and perform better when called upon.
Modern life doesn’t exactly encourage you to spend time outdoors, with more and more innovative ways of keeping you indoors being invented all the time. Many of us are forced to lead sedentary lifestyles, through work or through other circumstances, and aren’t able to take the time outdoors our bodies need. Changing up your routine to include some natural light and a new environment can do wonders to your concentration and peace of mind.
Taking your children’s learning outside has some incredible benefits. They may feel refreshed in the new environment and think differently, unencumbered by the usual stresses. Kids can approach education in a different way, and see how things learned in the classroom relate to the world outside. The outdoors is an enjoyable space in which to learn, and is a pleasant novelty that will keep them interested.
Some children thrive in a formal environment, while others benefit from a different approach. Learning outside can give these children the space to shine, whilst more academic kids can be helped to see learning from a new perspective. The fluidity of an outdoor classroom benefits all different types of learners, and makes education a more elastic experience.
When it comes to taking your learning outside, there is no “one way” to do it. The best way is to use whatever you have access to, and whatever you think will help inspire your children. Find out more about Outdoor Classroom Day here, and see if it is something you could get involved in, and help your children discover the joy of outdoor learning.
There are many ways in which you can take your learning outside. Firstly, it’s important to say that no specialist equipment is needed, and that simply heading outside with the right attitude is enough! There are however things that can make an outdoor classroom semi-permanent, and ready to go whenever you need it.
This can range from simply taking the curriculum outside, to fully incorporating the outdoor setting into the lessons. Playdale’s Outdoor Classrooms range provides you with some flexible options for sheltering while learning outdoors, and our Environmental Play range helps children connect with the natural world through practical experience.
If you’re looking for inspiration for your outdoor area why not download a copy of our virtual ‘Playground Inspiration for Schools and Nurseries’ by clicking here.
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