Outdoor education may sound like a modern fad to many. However, this has so many advantages that it is vital for young children. Read on to find out why.
- Dispel the myth that learning only takes place in school
Many people, not just children, believe that learning only takes place inside the school building. It’s something formal, something strict and something planned. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Also, teachers aren’t the only educators in a child’s life. Parents, siblings, grandparents, club leaders, etc. play a role.
- Apply learning in different contexts
If children learn about the value of money in just one classroom, they may not be able to apply that skill to their own lives. For example, a child who has the chance to go to the store and spend a dollar will understand the concept of changing money for an item far better than someone who just fills out a worksheet based on it. The same goes for skills like measuring. Why should children only be made to measure the length of things within a classroom? In the great outdoors, people who build enclosures for their animals, build a new fence for their yard, or set up a campsite have to use the ability to measure. It is also important to understand the use of technology in life outside of school. Many teachers recommend using an electronic measurement device or a website to aid learning.
- Promotes an active lifestyle
“Stop running!” School buildings are a place where you are not allowed to run or jog unless you are a teacher in a hurry. Rules can then be broken. When classrooms are badly done, they create passive individuals. Learners who stick to the rules but are not fully engaged in what they are doing. Do you take the students outside and what do they do first? You are running around! There are fewer restrictions placed on them and they can be active not only in terms of engagement but also in terms of their physical selves. Who says a child cannot successfully study their timetables if they participate in outdoor games?
- Learn by playing
Playful learning is the most common way of bringing up young children. Playing is a matter of course in the great outdoors, as there are fewer restrictions and more options. This Utah Preschool The outside area only shows what is possible. For example, although a classroom may have a role play area, there are also more formal areas where children know they need to sit and study. It is important to spend time outdoors and allow children to create their own learning opportunities. Anna Ephgrave Planning at the moment Approach is perfect for this.
- The physical and sensory approach works for younger children
Many children rely on a physical and sensory approach to learn when they are young. Nature is the obvious choice for many to have this opportunity. It seems much more acceptable to encourage water and messy outdoor play.
While we strongly believe that children should be actively encouraged to spend time outdoors during their early years of school, the benefits can certainly persist later in life. It is also important to ensure that the environment itself is fit and includes prompts and devices to aid their learning.
More about playing and learning
Games made by children that teach
How to combine learning with games for a kid-friendly summer
Should you leave school?
Learning and playing and why both are important for teachers
Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-18 technology for 30 years. She is the editor of over a hundred technical resources, including a K-12 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship Curriculum. She is an associate professor of technology, master teacher, webmaster for four blogs Amazon Vine Voice, CSTA Presentation Reviewer, Freelance Technical Journalist, Contributor to NEA today and author of the tech thriller, Chasing a sub and Twenty-four days. You can find their resources at Structured learning.
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