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Head Teachers in Bicester and surrounding areas were offered a new and exciting approach to outdoor learning. One teacher from each Primary School had an opportunity to apply for a funded place on the two day Level 2 Outdoor Learning Practice course and a half day measuring impacts workshop both delivered by Muddy Feet.
This course inspired teachers to understand and see how different areas of the curriculum can be taught outdoors using natural and low cost resources. The key focus was taking lessons outside rather than teaching outdoor learning as an additional subject. The practical nature of this course required teachers to plan , prepare and deliver outdoor learning lessons to achieve their qualification. This started the outdoor learning programmes in schools but also provided the opportunity for teachers to gain outdoor teaching experience and be able to reflect on these.
The measuring impacts workshop enabled teachers to identify and measure their outputs and outcomes , and identify how children can input in to the programme. The teachers can evidence the success of their outdoor teaching.
This project was funded by Healthy Bicester, Cherwell Council. Cherwell District Council’s lead member for health and wellbeing, Cllr Andrew McHugh said:
“Classroom based activities have their place,but children do their best learning when they are truly engaged with the subject. Moving everyday learning outside not only makes it more relevant, it also offers the opportunity to have more fun!”

KEY RESULTS

10 Teachers qualified in Level 2 Outdoor Learning Practice.

8 Schools delivered outdoor learning programmes.

8 Schools identified areas for outdoor learning and environmental improvements such as installing bug hotels, establishing areas for learning and wild flowers.

1 School developed 'whole school outdoor learning strategy' and went on to have a further full day INSET training for the wider staff team.

Increased understanding on the difference between Forest School and Outdoor Learning approaches.

30 Curriculum subject maps to outdoor learning activities produced.

Increased understanding of environmental and sustainability issues.

9 teachers taught in how to establish evaluation and monitoring to measure impact of outdoor learning programmes.

Teachers Feedback, 2019

"Using the outdoor space and doing a range of activities, combination of indoor learning and hands on activities made the course really interesting and more memorable"
"Reviewing our sites, it gave me loads of ideas"
"I was at a loss when planning and now I have tons of ideas"
"Most engaging course I have been on"
"Clearly defining various forms of outdoor activity and their varying methods and aims (i.e. outdoor learning and forest school) made me think about what I do and how it can be enriched"

Read about it in the press here

 

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With gutter

Teachers trained in how to teach outdoors