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!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Science Lab!

As the weather heats up, we LOVE to add water play to the Outdoor Classroom. This week, we created a science lab in the dramatic play center. In one area we had crushed ice with spoons and applesauce cups. On the back table we added blocks of ice with small hammers and golf tees for pounding. In the front bins, we used three different colors of water. Just add goggles, lab coats, beakers, funnels, test tubes and basters for serious scientific discovery!

Colored water, frozen in latex gloves. 


  1. I love the outdoor classroom. I think this is such a good time for the students to learn and get hands on jobs that will help them learn faster and more efficiently. Thanks for the great blog!

  2. Great ideas here, I did the frozen gloves in winter but it would be fun to do it now in the warmer weather.

  3. Looks so fun! I love the outdoor classroom idea. It would be a great time for the kids. I know my cousins son loves them. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Stumbled across your blog while looking for ideas on creating an enriching and rewarding outdoor environment! Great stuff, makes me miss being a classroom teacher!