First slide

Caring, sharing & learning together

Sharing, Caring and Learning Together

Outdoor Play

Outdoor Play

We have a large open space which makes up our nursery garden. We use the garden every day at nursery in all weathers (rain or shine). It is healthy for children to be outside and also great for their well-being. Outdoor play is an integral part of the early years curriculum and one we are not prepared to compromise on because of the fantastic benefits it brings. It allows children to have awe and wonder at the world around them. They can be curious, explore, investigate, move about and become active learners.

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Curriculum places strong emphasis on the importance and value of daily outdoor experiences for children’s learning and development. Outdoor play helps to establish active healthy lifestyles early on. It offers children opportunities to use their bodies physically by engaging in activity with freedom of movement. It also supports those children who learn best when outdoors or through being very active and allows children to explore learning on a bigger scale than indoors. The sun, wind, snow and rain provide rich experiences to support children’s understanding of their world.

Through these experiences they will be more informed about the seasonal changes that occur and how nature affects the environment. Children are also able to directly engage with nature and wildlife by growing plants, discovering creatures and looking after our pets. In fact almost any learning can take place outdoors including; running, climbing , balancing, discovering, investigating, exploring, growing, digging, constructing and building, measuring, counting, problem solving, creating, mixing, experimenting, inventing, music making, dancing, imagining, storytelling, caring, nurturing, collaborating, sharing, turn taking, listening, talking, independence, making choices, risk taking and adventure.

In recent times there has been a change in the way we live and operate within our society that has decreased the access and use of outdoors for many young children. The things influencing this include increased fear amongst adults in relation to children’s safety and technological advances leading to an overwhelming prominence of more sedentary indoor activities, such as screen time. These factors can have a negative effect on a child’s natural enthusiasm for exploration and movement. Real experiences are more enriching for the brain than passive virtual ones.

Ultimately, the outdoor learning environment offers unique characteristics and features; and is of equal importance and value to indoor learning at nursery. Overwhelmingly, it has a positive impact on children’s well-being and development.