1st Edition

Educating Young Children through Natural Water
How to use coastlines, rivers and lakes to promote learning and development

ISBN 9780415728911
Published November 13, 2015 by Routledge
136 Pages 16 Color Illustrations

USD $29.95

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

Coastlines, rivers and natural waters have a huge amount to offer young children, providing a unique environment for their learning and development. The environment and its almost daunting size touches something deep within the children and – surprisingly – the large space brings them closer together. This book provides a comprehensive guide to Natural Water School provision by exploring its special pedagogy, the organisation and management of the Water School session and discussing the learning environment and its implications for children’s wellbeing and development. It clearly explains the key principles of this recently developed, contemporary approach and sets out a framework for setting up and leading a Natural Water School programme.

The book shows how the aims and outcomes of early years education, including the Early Years Foundation Stage can all be achieved within the Natural Water School environment and is supported by examples and case studies throughout. Full of practical suggestions and activities, it includes:

  • Activity ideas covering topics such as wildlife, sensory activities, crafts, social development, physical play and construction in different seasons
  • Unique teaching tools to observe and develop the children
  • Ideas for working with children of different ages and learning styles
  • Detailed guidance on health and safety including risk assessments

Offering a sound historical background, a solid pedagogical framework and a step-by-step guide to Natural Water School practice, this handy text will help students and practitioners to fully understand this new and increasingly popular approach to early years education and how it can benefit the children they care for.

Table of Contents

1. The Origin and Validity of Water School 2. The Environments and Ecosystems of Water School 3. The Pedagogy of Water School 4. How children learn in Water School 5. Health and Safety in Water School 6. Water School Leader Training 7. International Examples of Education through Natural Water

View More



Judit Horvath is a day nursery manager with Qualified Teacher Status and Early Years Professional Status, currently working on her PhD. She has written widely for magazines such as Nursery World, Teach Nursery, Practical Preschool and Early Years Educator, whilst actively practising and developing her Water School approach.


"This book would be perfect for anyone looking for ideas in the realm of outdoor learning – if you are then this could be just the book for you. Boasting a photo-illustrated section and with plenty of ideas around working with children of different ages and with different learning styles, this book will prove to be a good investment. […] All seven areas of learning in the Early Years Foundation Stage can be covered during Water School activities, making it a welcome addition to our understanding of the benefits of outdoor learning in early childhood education." - Martine Horvath, EYE

"Judit Horvath's book explores how to use coastlines, rivers and lakes to promote young children's learning and development. A raft of activity ideas focus on wildlife, crafts, social development, physical play and construction in different seasons" - Teach Early Years