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Curriculum / Outdoor Learning

Learning from nature

As part of the School Without Walls creative programme, classes from St Andrew’s have experienced school days in the woods, with groups visiting local outdoor sites to engage with learning in natural environments.

Y1 spent two days in Dingly Dell at Victoria Park, one very wet day and one dry and sunny, where we looked at how the outdoor environment changes the way children engage with learning about their world, and how the weather impacts on this. The children wove exploration and scientific questioning with imagination and storytelling, engaging creatively with open-ended natural materials to make habitats, and immersing themselves fully in their surroundings, clambering up and down wet, muddy banks and measuring the girth of huge trees with their arms.

Y3 spent three days in the grounds of Kingswood school, where we extended our outdoor experience from the small space at St Andrew’s school to an expansive area with ancient trees, huge views and lots of space to build shelters, make fires and cook, and engage creatively with the space. The children designed, constructed and problem-solved on a large scale and developed narratives around their dens that linked together over the few days we were on site. Ideas developed and learning opportunities were extended as the children became increasingly resourceful and creative with the materials available in the natural environment.