Outdoor Learning through the Seasons
An Essential Guide for the Early Years
Outdoor learning and play experiences are an essential part of young children’s development. The importance of offering children first-hand experience of the natural world becomes more urgent as research evidence demonstrates the benefits of becoming physically and emotionally involved with the natural world. Outdoor Learning through the Seasons shows how we can encourage young children to engage with nature on a daily basis throughout the year.
Using the four seasons as a framework, it supports adults to develop their own awareness of the world around them and feel confident about taking children outside every day. There are suggestions for caring for gardens and wildlife through the year, and ideas to brighten grey winter days, enjoy the summer sunshine or explore in the snow. Now featuring full-colour photographs throughout, this new edition has been updated to include references to recent research, new material on Forest Schools, discussion questions for practitioners and in-depth case studies of learning in action.
- Ideas for all seasons, weather conditions and working with the four elements: earth, air, water and fire
- Guidance on fulfilling the learning requirements of EYFS and the Characteristics of Effective Learning
- Advice on working with parents and the role of adults
- Practical tips and suggestions of how to make the most of a small space or how to re-plan an existing space
- Useful reference lists of further resources including stories, poems and websites
This practical book is essential reading for all those looking to provide rich and stimulating outdoor learning and play provision for children in early years settings on a daily basis and for parents and carers wishing to get the most of time outdoors with their children.
Table of Contents
Introduction Part One: Outdoor learning and the Early Years Foundation Stage 1. Creating an Enabling Environment Outdoors: EYFS: The Seven Areas of Learning 2. Creating an Enabling Environment Outdoors: EYFS Characteristics of Effective Learning 3. EYFS: Creating an Enabling Environment Outdoors - Design, Layout and Planting 4. EYFS: Working in partnership with parents Part Two: The four seasons 5. Spring 6. Summer 7. Autumn 8. Winter Part Three: The four elements 9. Earth 10. Air 11. Water 12. Fire Conclusion Bibliography
Ann Watts is an early years consultant with a particular focus on working outdoors. She has had two nursery headships and also worked as an Early Years Adviser. Her previous publications include Every Nursery Needs a Garden (Routledge 2011), Exploring Poetry with Young Children (Routledge 2017) and co-author of Developing Creativity and Curiosity Outdoors (Routledge 2019).