It Not "Just Recess" Anymore!

Teachers often heave a sigh of relief when they take their students out to recess. Finally! The children can burn off the pent up energy they had been accruing for the past few hours indoors. But what if we change our outlook on outdoor play time? What if we create an outdoor environment that offered all of the learning opportunities that one would typically find indoors? What if children could run out to a well-planned play yard to find experiences in math, science, nature, dramatic play, water, building and construction, sensory activities, physical development, art and music? What if they play yard developed critical thinking, discovery, problem solving, and cooperative skills? The result would be that we wouldn't have "just recess" anymore. We would have The Outdoor Classroom!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The case for RAMPS and PATHWAYS - Link to EXCELLENT YouTube Video

This is a fantastic series of videos outlining the benefits of using ramps and pathways in the classroom (or in the OUTDOOR CLASSROOM!). The videos are based on the book, Ramps and Pathways: A Constructivist Approach to Physics with Young Children, available from NAEYC. Funny enough, we just bought the book at our center, but these videos represent much of the same content.

The teachers on the videos use cove moulding for their ramps, but gutters, pvc pipes, swimming noodles (cut in half or whole), clear hoses, and even blocks work for the same purpose.

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