Risk, Challenge and Adventure in the Early Years : A practical guide to exploring and extending learning outdoors book cover
1st Edition

Risk, Challenge and Adventure in the Early Years
A practical guide to exploring and extending learning outdoors

ISBN 9780415667401
Published December 17, 2014 by Routledge
192 Pages

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Book Description

What is the difference between ‘risk’ and ‘danger’? What can children learn from taking risks? How can you provide key experiences for children and ensure their safety outdoors?

Young children will naturally seek out challenges and take risks and this is crucial to their overall development. This book clearly explains why children should be given the freedom to take risks and provides practical guidance on how to offer stimulating and challenging outdoor experiences that will extend all areas of children’s learning.

Including examples of activities for all weather conditions across all areas of learning, the book covers:

  • The pedagogical history of adventure, risk and challenge
  • Health, wellbeing and keeping safe
  • The adult role
  • Risk assessment
  • Supporting individual children with different needs
  • Environments that enable challenging and adventurous play
  • Working with parents and addressing concerns
  • Observation, planning and assessment

This book is essential reading for practitioners and students that wish to provide rich experiences for children that will enable them to become confident and adventurous learners.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: The historical background  Chapter Two: Defining Adventure, Risk and Challenge  Chapter Three: Attitudes towards Risk, Challenge and Adventure  Chapter Four: The benefits of Risk, Challenge and Adventure  Chapter Five: The Role of the Adult  Chapter Six - Environment  Chapter 7: Risk Assessment  Chapter 8: Adding adventure through expeditions and visitors  Chapter 9: Dealing with Concerns  Chapter 10: Planning adventurous activities throughout the year.

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Kathryn Solly is the retired Headteacher of Chelsea Open Air Nursery School and Children’s Centre. She is now a specialist Early Years consultant, trainer and author.


"Risk, Challenge and Adventure… is an extensive and comprehensive guide to outdoor learning, and is an ideal tool for in-house training. Its developmental perspectives and wealth of experience shared by the author- supported by solid research—offers opportunities for a variety of training sessions. […] I would encourage every setting to add this volume to their staff room resources." – Barbara Isaacs, Montessori International

"This book reminds us that adventure, risk and challenge in the outdoors are vital not just for physical development, but to develop Discoverers, Reasoners and Thinkers. Kathryn Solly's book shows us how to develop exciting and challenging provision that will support embedded learning in a way that tests and checklists cannot do." - Dr Sue Allingham, Early Years Educator