Next Sunday (11th May) is National Children’s Day UK 2014(NCDUK) and it will be dedicated to exploring the necessity for children to connect with nature and the positive effects of being outside. In the week running up to next Sunday, the NCDUK is collaborating with Project Wild Thing and the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood to encourage everyone to swap screen-time for wild time. Why not lead the way and set aside a day this week to take your class outdoors?
Ask your pupils to come equipped with wellies, raincoats, sun hats and sun screen so that, whatever the weather, they are ready to get out; to explore and experiment; to be rained on (or not) and to take risks in a safe environment. Encourage them to take notice of the beauty and drama that nature is providing with spring in full flow. Everything is doing something. Leaves are unfurling in a myriad of greens, hawthorns are in full blossom and bluebells, violets and forget-me-nots are adding their brilliant blues to the riot of spring colour. Birds are providing an exuberant outdoor soundtrack as they protect their nests, mates and chicks and it is not just a dawn phenomenon. They are at it all day!
Why not have your class listen to the following birdsongs before you head out of the classroom and see if they can identify any of them outside Ask them to be still and quiet (after a good old romp) and to listen to the birds singing. Encourage them to follow the sound with their eyes and identify the songster. Try to count how many robins or blackbirds have set up home in your school’s grounds and look carefully to see if any nests can be spotted. But most of all, just enjoy the riot of sound, colour and scent that is spring.
The Learning Escape is passionate about the Great Outdoors and the need to get children outside. Take a moment to have a look at our whitepaper “The Outdoor Environment”, and get your budding environmental citizens outside and full of the joys of spring.