The emergency exit to outdoor learning...
This sounds like an amazing and wonderful place for kids to grow and learn.
I love this post Juliet - you have taken us on a wonderful walk through an inspirational centre and it has my mind buzzing with ideas. There is so much to love and aspire to here that I will have to read it again and jot down ideas for our own preschool. I'm a huge fan of free choice indoor / outdoor environments as you know and it is a treat to see how other centres put this into practice.
Strangely I feel quite frustrated in that there is SO much more to this centre. Firstly, the place opened with a patch of tarmac. There was nothing else there.Second all the improvements have happened through the children's own ideas and inspiration. The outdoor space belongs to them. So often adults go "Hey, that looks like a good idea, I want a xxx like that in my nursery". Time is needed to observe children, listen to them and help them become involved and empowered.Thirdly the children aren't confined to this outdoor space. They have frequent and regular opportunities to go off-site and explore the wide world. For example, the children always help take material to the recycling facilities. There is a forest school site 10 mins walk away where the children have a more authentic nature based experience. This is happening in the heart of our capital city.Thanks for your comments and a big thumbs up to Cowgate staff and children!
This sounds fantastic. The fire ring reinforces for me much of the activites that are really ok and very useful for children's learning but seen as too dangerous in my school. My eyes are really being opened up to possibilities back home in Australia. Thanks for all the information.
Oh wow... what an awesome centre. This is the way early childhood education really needs to be going, not just in the UK but around the world.
There is just so much goodness here. Inspirational!
I love seeing another urban outdoor classroom. Inspiring. Maybe we'll get there one day!
More more more. Kids and adults need more time in the open air. Thanks for sharing your respect for the needs of natural beings.
Oh wow ... amazing! Wouldn't it be wonderful if children everywhere, were given similar learning through play opportunities! I love the philosophy behind "Cowgate under 5's centre"Donna :)
I love outdoor classroom. I practice same in my pre-school/day care. but these children are learning way better being so much interacted with nature indoors and outdoors. simply love it.
Very cool outdoor classroom! Thank you for sharing all of the cool photos of the space!hope that you will pop by to see my blog, too.Have a happy weekend,Colleen:)
Cowgate is just so amazing.I can imagine how much fun the children have while learning... the way learning should be...if only it were not very expensive here in the Philippines to put up something close to it...
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