This webinar with Dr Helen Little explores how affordances in the outdoor environment promote children’s wellbeing and learning. Helen discusses how being outdoors, especially in natural outdoor learning environments, provides the opportunity for authentic experiences that support children’s learning and development through open-ended interactions, exploration, discovery, risk-taking, and connection with nature.
To help you navigate the webinar easily, there is a list of the key topics covered in the session below, including the time each was discussed. The key ideas discussed in this webinar are also shared in a short insight article.
Topics discussed in this webinar
Times shown in minutes and seconds from the start of the video
|1.14||Why outdoor environments are important|
|4.16||What elements are important to provide in an outdoor environment?|
|7.20||The importance of risky play and how to provide it|
|15.02||The teacher’s role in supporting outdoor learning|
|17.06||How to convince parents that risky play is a good thing|
|25.44||Rules and boundaries for rough and tumble play|
|27.11||What kind of spaces are best for outdoor play?|
|30.52||Risk and challenge for infants and toddlers|
|34.45||Supporting 4 year olds with challenging play|
|37.38||Providing challenging play opportunities in a mixed age setting|
|40.11||How much outdoor play do children need?|
|43.21||Supporting children who are hesitant to play outdoors|
|46.27||Managing parents’ expectations around outdoor play|
Questions for exploring the key ideas from this webinar
- How might you expand the diversity of play opportunities outdoors at your setting?
- Which indoor play activities could you adapt for outdoor provision in ways that capitalise on the uniqueness of the outdoor environment?
- How can you advocate for a range of outdoor play opportunities with parents? How can you find out about and alleviate parents’ concerns about outdoor play?
- Can you think of ways in which children at your setting can engage in different types of risky play (playing with speed, height, impact, tools, dangerous elements, rough and tumble, being away from adults)?
- Do you have an outdoor play policy? Does it describe the benefits of outdoor play and risky play, as well as identify processes for hazard management?
Ball, D. J., Gill, T., & Spiegal, B. (2008). Managing risk in play provision: Implementation guide (2nd ed.).
Little, H., Elliott, S., & Wyver, S. (2017). Outdoor Learning Environments: Spaces for Exploration, Discovery and Risk-taking. Melbourne: Routledge Taylor & Francis.
Little, H. (2019). Active outdoor play. Everyday Learning Series, 17(2). Canberra: Early Childhood Australia.
Outside Play website. https://outsideplay.ca/ – Interactive resource that aims to support parents, caregivers and educators gain the confidence and skills to support children’s outdoor play, especially risky play.