Outdoor Learning Made Easy: How To Create Learning Activities That Interest Kids

Your excited little learners are always want to play: while some play with blocks and balls, others are at the art centre, creating stuff with them whenever they get a chance to. What if you could channel this energy of theirs in the right direction with a proper outdoor learning routine? PS., even if you’ve been nervous of trying out outdoor learning right from the start, you CAN make it work and make outdoor learning easy – with a little bit of understanding and a little extra belief in yourself.

In this episode of A Playful Podcast, I teach you the 3 steps to creating an effective outdoor learning program for your kindergarteners. Put conscious effort into following these, and I’m sure you’ll succeed.

Here’s a brief overview: we start with learning to overcome your mindset issues. Imposter Syndrome, as we discussed in the previous episode, is FOR REAL a thing. Believe in yourself and believe that what you know matters. 

Once you’ve conquered that, or aligned yourself to the healing path, allow your littles to guide you. You heard that right: your little ones would guide you on what interests them. Your job would then be to assess those interests. Observe – are they scribing letters on the ground? Maybe you could set up a writing activity. Are they collecting stuff from anywhere around? Maybe you could organize a scavenger hunt.

Lastly, create a routine – so both you and your littles know what to expect on a particular day. It doesn’t have to be complicated: a simple whistle at the end of an outdoor learning activity or a 1-2-3 call before it could create your routine.

To explore these in more detail, head over to the episode audio, where I explain with examples how to integrate ALL of these into your teaching.

Take a look at these episode highlights for a quick overview of the tips:

>> Open observation: Observe your littles as they engage in play. You’ll undeniably land the idea for a new game/learning activity from it.

>> Know that you don’t always have to be doing something: You might feel it right to follow your kids everywhere, micro-analyze them, but no, that’s not close to necessary. Sometimes, kids are happy doing what they do – by themselves.

>> Go over your expectations clearly and consistently: A daily or weekly check around the boundaries, play rules, timing, bathroom routine, tidy up routine, different signals, playgrounds, rules, school rules, risky play – all help.

>> Rid yourself of the pressure of being the planner: Allow your kids to decide what they want to do sometimes. Co-plan, co-ideate – it’s unbelievably rewarding.

Here are some resources you should check out before you leave: 

Episode 16 – Where I talk about Imposter Syndrome – click here

Camp Kinder registration – It is opening on May 1, so make sure you’re on the crew list – click here

KW: learning activity, outdoor learning, outdoor learning activity, outdoor learning program, play rules, school rules

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Kindergarten specialist turned curriculum writer. Mom, wannabe baker and lover of early 2000s Disney Channel (hello, Lizzie McGuire and HSM). Enthusiast of ponytails, pancakes and helping Canadian kindergarten teachers stress less by simplifying their planning and re-igniting their love of play-based learning. Here to help you take back your weekends and love teaching on week days.

Or, send me an email at mariah@aplayfulpurpose.com