Outdoor Learning Whatever the Season Autumn/Winter Outdoor Learning
In addition to watching and counting the wildlife in your playground, it can be very calming and almost magical to listen to the different sounds that are created outside. Not only do birds & other animals make beautiful sounds, but so do the trees when they are rustling particularly in autumn when the leaves are falling onto the ground.
Look After Nature
Once the children have studied wildlife and began to understand it, they could start looking after the wildlife in the playground and create ‘bug houses’ for insects using leaves, twigs & acorns etc. They could also make bird feeders and feed the birds regularly.
Study the Weather
Lessons can be organised under the canopy to study the weather and to teach pupils how the weather system works such as the water cycle and how global warming is affecting our weather. This can be much more fun & exciting for children when the lessons are carried out when it’s raining so they can study the elements whilst experiencing them.
Setting up a seasonal weather watch is another great way to use the natural resources to reinforce learning about the seasons and wind, rain and snow.
Freeze natural objects outside and see how different they look once they are frozen. On really cold days water can be left outside to see what happens the next morning. Studying ice and frost patterns can also be very interesting and don't forget to look out for icicles!
Children can compare each others footprints in the snow and identify the different footprints made by wildlife such as birds. Photos of the footprints can be taken and added to their seasonal scrapbooks.
All of these activities can also be enjoyed under your canopy even when it’s raining or snowing because a canopy will keep everyone dry and sheltered whilst you learn - just remember to wrap up warm and have fun!
We have created some fun worksheets to help you incorporate the outside into your lessons, these can be photocopied for use in your classes - you can find these at the back of your guide.
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