As an Outdoor Ed. student, I see the great value in connecting with the outdoors. So do the creators of the program featured in this article.
In California, a new approach to learning is being developed. Teachers are creating outdoor garden classrooms as a stimulating learning environment for preschool students. Teachers and landscape architects have been working hand in hand to create distinct learning environments in the form of gardens, with the main goal being to connect the children to the environment at an early age. Outdoor classrooms have been proven to increase focus among the students, and they pave the way for interactive lessons such as the stages of plant growth, etcetera. Teachers are being given special training on how to organize such lessons. Based on the parental feedback featured in the article, it is an excellent preschool program.
While not as adventurous as our own Outdoor Ed. program at Cairine Wilson, I believe this program is a great way to connect preschool students to the environment early. The interactive lesson plans and stimulating learning environment will hopefully make them better students in the years that follow. Also, connecting a new generation to the environment at an early age will hopefully instil respect for our planet. The generation that is most at par with and understanding of nature will be the one to best take care of it.
I`m rather jealous these kids start school with Outdoor Ed., while I had to wait until last year.
• Rivera, Carla. "These green thumbs sprout early." Los Angeles Times. N.p., 25 Dec. 2010. Web. 11 Jan. 2011.