Outdoor learning is important for children because it allows them to explore a new environment and develop a sense of respect for nature. There are so many learning opportunities in the great outdoors that children can’t experience in a classroom, such as risk taking and survival skills, which is great for kinaesthetic learners who enjoy hands-on activities. What’s more, the fresh air and exercise that’s experienced outdoors is great for both physical and mental health. With that in mind, here are five ideas of outdoor learning activities, suggested by a private college in London, that you could try with your child.
1) Grow Your Own
Gardening is a fantastic option for children because it not only prepares them with the necessary skills they’ll need when they have their own garden as adults but is also a lesson in science. For example, they will learn what is required to keep plants alive as well as the different parts of a plant, which will help reinforce their classroom learning. It’s also a fun, rewarding way to get some fresh air and exercise and bond as a family.
2) Prepare Scavenger Hunts
Prepare a list of out items you’d like your child to find, like a sycamore leaf, a twig, a conker etc and head to your local park or forest. You could even get their friends involved and turn the experience into a healthy competition; the first one to find all the items on the list could win a prize. This is a chance for your child to socialise, while also interacting with nature and learning about the different items on your list.
3) Visit a Farm
If you’re looking for a way to spend a day, either on the weekend or during the school holidays, why not consider visiting a farm. This is a chance for your child to learn about various animals they might not otherwise come across and develop their knowledge about where eggs, wool, milk, and other produce come from. Most kids love interacting with animals, so they won’t even realise that your day out is a learning experience.
4) Go Camping
There are plenty of camping locations all over the UK and abroad and they provide an opportunity for children to learn various survival skills. For example, they will learn how to cook a meal with limited supplies, and you could also teach them how to read a map or compass to explore the local area. What’s more, camping as a family will help you build fond memories that you can hold onto for a long time to come.
5) Create Artwork
Most kids love to get creative as it’s a chance for them to express themselves in a way that won’t be graded or judged. There are plenty of natural materials that can be used in artwork, like sculptures made of twigs or using leaves and petals to create a collage. The good thing about art outdoors is that it doesn’t matter how messy it gets.