Outdoor Classrooms and Nature Trails
Using & teaching
Outdoor classrooms provide not only a change of scenery for core subjects but also an environment well suited for age appropriate lessons in biology, botany, natural science, and self-initiated learning experiences.
Consider incorporating nature play elements into your school’s outdoor spaces: Nature Play at Home, by Allen Cooper and Sarah Konradi is an online document that provides great ideas on nature play designs that are appropriate for schools, public settings, and at home
Examples of nature-based lessons include: food webs, ecosystems, diversity, human impact on ecosystems, habitat loss, conservation and maintenance, predator prey relationships, and plant structure. In addition, outdoor classrooms provide space for drawing, reflecting, and writing.
Lesson ideas include:
- Season-based scavenger hunts can provide an interesting way for students to interact with the nature trail. For example, asking younger students to find 3 types of butterflies in the spring.
- Word banks (e.g. seed, pollen, flower, pollinator)
- Interactive science journals