10 Ways to Take Your Learning OutsideBetsy Strauss
Spring is a wonderful time to be outside. It’s also a time of year when it’s challenging to want to continue pressing on in your studies. A simple solution to this dilemma is to take the learning outside. There are many great options for getting work done in the great outdoors.
10 Ways to Take Your Learning Outside
1. Study Science Outside With Nature Studies
Spring is rich with fascinating things to observe in nature. Nature studies can be done in your back yard or at a local park. It’s even fun to take a day trip to a nearby state or national park to observe different varieties of flora and fauna. Here are some simple options for rich study:
- Bird watching
- Tree identification
- Nature sketching
- Cloud observations
2. Hunt Historical Markers Near You
Have you ever driven by a historical marker and thought it would be cool to find out why it’s there? With this cool website, you can find all of the historical markers near you. Go on a scavenger hunt to find as many as you can and discover the history right around your area!
3. Read At The Park
If you just need a change of scenery, take your favorite books, a blanket, and some snacks and relocate the reading for the day to a local park. Just make sure that the park you pick has restroom facilities! There is nothing more derailing to a great park day reading as having to gather everyone up to go find a place to use the restroom.
4. Revamp Your P.E. Curriculum
While I don’t have formal P.E. plans for my kids, spring time is a great time to get outside and practice some of those energy exerting skills. Here are some possibilities:
- Go for a walk
- Kick a soccer ball around
- Throw the Frisbee
- Ride bikes
5. Bring Math To Life With Nature Manipulatives
Nature provides many great natural manipulatives. Collect rocks, sticks, or pine cones and practice some of those math concepts with the objects gathered. You can have so much fun with math outside. It’s okay to let go of the math book for a day to review and reinforce math concepts.
6. Outdoor Art Options
A box of chalk and a driveway can be a great way to take art outdoors. While that is a simple way to incorporate art, it’s not the only way. Collect leaves and do a leaf rubbing, or take a sketch notebook outside and sketch a tree. The great outdoors can be very inspiring for budding artists.
7. Geography Studies Outside
We live in geography right? Why not take advantage of your local geography to inspire young learners. Try out some orienting map activities with geocaching. Your kids will love the real life treasure hunt! Another option is having your kids make a map of the neighborhood or even just the back yard. Geography can be a great option for spring studies.
8. Educational Gardening Opportunities
What am I saying? Everything about gardening is an educational opportunity. There is so much that could be researched, experimented with, or observed while gardening. Some of my favorite thoughts about my spiritual condition and the character of God have come while I was watering and weeding my garden. Even if it’s just one small container, there is so much goodness that can be gleaned while in the garden.
9. Nature Inspired Writing
As Anne of Green Gables would say, nature offers great scope for the imagination. Have your kids write a poem about a flower, a bug, or a tree. Create a silly story about what squirrels are thinking while chasing one another from tree to tree. There is so much inspiration for writers all around in nature.
10. Capturing Nature With Photography
My kids love it when I let them use my camera. I love seeing what they find fascinating in a garden and the way they capture it in a photograph. We’ve also wondered around a historical main street looking for architectural alphabet elements to photograph.
With so many great learning opportunities outside, why wouldn’t you just give in and enjoy learning outdoors?