Hand Made Places believe that playing outside is paramount to children’s educational and physical development! That’s why we’ve made a short list of outdoor activities which can encourage learning in many different subject areas…
Learning outdoors is something that teachers have been trying to incorporate into the curriculum for many years, but often get stuck for ideas.
So we’ve come up with some for you! Below are a list of:
Five Brilliant Outdoor Learning Activities for KS1 & KS2 Pupils
So enjoy our suggestions and get planning your activities now to help pupils learn whilst having fun amongst nature…
A great way to get children learning outdoors, without them even noticing is by encouraging a scavenger hunt.
Children, with the supervision of an adult, can go outdoors and find items on a list. The list can have whatever theme the teacher chooses – the idea is to plan in advance.
Teachers can incorporate this activity into a science lesson by making children find wild flowers or leaves. Whilst it is easy to find a flower in a field, naming a certain type of flower is more of a challenge; pupils have to distinguish the difference between individual varieties of flowers.
Another route which you could go down is to incorporate the scavenger hunt into an art lesson. Try instructing the class to collect items from a list of colours, for example, green, grey, white and yellow. You could also get the children to collect different coloured leaves and then use them in the next suggested arty activity…
Download the above, FREE Scavenger Hunt checklist now!
Leafy Arts and Crafts.
Leaves are a great material when it comes to arts and crafts!
Children can collect a variety of different styles of leaves which they can then paint and print onto paper to create a beautiful leafy pattern. This is a great art lesson and will help children to understand patterns.
Another great way to incorporate the great outdoors into your art lessons is to collect a variety of different coloured leaves and simply rip them up creating smaller leaf sections. Children can then use these leaf sections as a collage, and stuck to a pre-printed image of a tree trunk.
A great, crafty way of getting children interested in nature.
You can allow children to get as messy as they like with crafts in an outdoor classroom – just make sure that everyone is wearing an apron to protect their uniform!
Outdoor Story Time.
Children of all ages love story time; taking your stories outdoors is a great way to keep children interested in literacy. Storytelling can not only be made fun by taking it outdoors, but it can also be made relevant.
At Hand Made Places we have a range of timber playground equipment which you can use to enhance story time. Our Storytellers Chair and Block Seats can be used to create a full story circle, a beautiful designated storytelling area. This will help children to settle, whether that be before lunch or just before they go home.
Children’s story time is also enhanced by our range of play sculptures and totems. For example we recommend the use of the rabbit, badger and hedgehog totems in a re-telling of woodland classics like Peter Rabbit.
Another way in which teachers can use play equipment to enhance story time is through the use of outdoor musical instruments. Our drums, bells and chimes can be used to create the sounds which are illustrated in the book.
Hand Made Places Mud Kitchen.
The Mud Kitchen from Hand Made Places can provide hours of fun for children of all ages. However it can also be used as a great way to aid children in their literacy lessons.
The organisers of Outdoor Classroom Day have provided plenty of lesson ideas, one of which suits our mud kitchen perfectly. Children can follow a recipe for a ‘Mud Pie’ allowing them to learn about different writing styles.
Furthermore if children manage to follow the recipe correctly they can then go on to write their own, for different pupils to follow.
Check out the suggested lesson plan here!
Your Indoor Lessons, Outdoors.
Though taking your lessons outdoors can be both fun and exciting for children, it does not mean that you actually have to alter your lesson plans. Hand Made Places have a number of large outdoor classroom areas where you can take part in a normal lesson, just amongst natural surroundings.
By also incorporating one of our outdoor Dry Wipe Board you can even go on to teach fractions and spellings!
Learning outdoors even when the lessons are exactly the same will encourage children to become more involved in the lesson. It will also enhance their communication and social skills.
Outdoor learning is great for children of all ages.
Being outdoors encourages children to become involved in more physical activity, as well as encouraging them to become more involved in their learning.
Doing something new and exciting even for just one day will help children to become interested in lessons which they previously took little interest in.
Find out about the benefits of outdoor learning & how to optimise your playground for outdoor lessons by taking a look at the other blogs in this series.
So make sure that your school sets up an outdoor classroom by contacting one of our trained advisers today!