We are looking to create an improved outside space for our children. We want to develop our field to make it multi-purpose and multi-functional to cater for all of our children. Cheryl, the owner of “Home of Gardens” has volunteered her time and drawn up landscape plans for our garden. Now we need to bring those plans to life, to create an outdoor space designed for outdoor learning.
As part of the redevelopment we would like to include:
• A wheelchair accessible path from the gate to the pond area
• A scramble net and slide into the hill
• Create a ‘muscle play’ area
• Create an adventure trail
• Build up our allotment area
• Develop our pond/sensory garden
• Increase the variety on our small animal farm
• Outdoor classroom
The core values of Ash Lea Curriculum with long-standing key concepts of outdoor learning, challenge, enjoyment, relevance, depth, development of the whole child and an adventurous approach to learning are at the core of outdoor pedagogy. the outdoor environment encourages staff and pupils to see each other in a different light, building positive relationships and improving self-awareness and understanding of others.
What is outside learning
Outdoor learning provides opportunities to develop positive relationships with the environment, others and ourselves through interaction with the natural world. These relationships are essential for the well-being and sustainability of individuals, society and our environment. Outdoor education engages our pupils in practical and active learning experiences in natural environments and settings typically beyond the school classroom. In these environments, pupils develop the skills and understandings to move safely and competently while valuing a positive relationship with natural environments and promoting the sustainable use of these environments.
Outdoor learning is uniquely placed to address the general capabilities and cross curriculum priorities of the Ash Lea Curriculum, in particular personal and social relationship. Outdoor education can be instrumental in the teaching of self-reliance, interdependence and leadership, the development of an adventurous spirit, managing personal risks, safe journeys in nature, the value of life-long outdoor recreation for enjoyment, health and well-being, understanding nature through direct experience.
Any learning experience that can be undertaken in the outdoors or in a natural setting can contribute positively to a range of learning areas. The unique and specific outcomes that outdoor learning can contribute to a pupil’s education include:
• Providing direct personal contact with nature (the outdoors) – in ways that promote enjoyment of outdoor activity and nature. Such enjoyment can be the basis for ongoing outdoor recreation and nature experiences through their lifespan, supporting personal health and wellbeing.
• Developing competence and safety management in the outdoors – and being especially relevant today with so many children reliant on electronic devices. This outcome includes how outdoor learning can teach pupils to assess risk and make judgements about their management of it.
• Enhancing well-being through guided reflection on involvement in group and individual activities that are challenging and adventurous.
• Developing essential personal and social capabilities such as communication, resilience, self-confidence, leadership, teamwork, goal setting, personal autonomy and initiative