Why and how should you imbed Outdoor Learning in your school?
“No one will protect what they don’t care about, and no one will care about what they have never experienced.” Sir David Attenborough CBE
Outdoor Learning is proven to raise attainment, improve behaviour and motivate and engage children in their learning as well as playing an important role in staff well-being, motivation and pupil relationships. EKO can support you by informing Governors and the SMT of the benefits and getting them fully on board as well as engaging staff and parents through CPD and family focussed sessions. We offer outdoor learning sessions and experiences for both staff and pupils, either together or independently, that support their curriculum and planning well, building on knowledge and skills gained during previous experiences, both inside and outside the classroom. EKO aims to help your pupils make outstanding progress in their learning and life skills and your staff to become more confident and skilled in making and applying outdoor learning curriculum links to their own planning.
To successfully embed Outdoor Learning (OL) into the everyday life of your school it is vital to clarify strategic directions and provide vision and leadership for your staff:
It is essential that it is:
• included in School Policy
• underpinned in School Development Plan
• supported by CPD for the whole staff team
• communicated effectively to the governors and parents in order to mobilise support
Training one member of staff to become a Level 3 Forest School Leader can cost in excess of £1000 with course fees, outdoor first aid and staff cover costs. For much less than this EKO can inform, engage and upskill your entire staff team ensuring that OL is imbedded across all learning.
At EKO, we believe that there are 5 steps of implementation that we can help you with:
1. Introduce OL in a staff meeting/twilight session or as part of an INSET. (£135)
2. Complete an outdoor site visit with your OL lead teacher with plant species ID, tree assessment, maintenance/improvement suggestions. (£60)
3. Create a bespoke School OL Handbook with policies and procedures, suggested lesson plans and site management plan. (£220)
4. Run Team Teaching OL sessions with each class to establish routines and demonstrate best practice. (£60 per class)
5. On-going CPD support with OL planning, and where required, delivery, including family events and staff team building opportunities. (£180 per day)
“As a school we really wanted to develop the opportunities we give our children through outdoor learning activities. EKO have greatly supported us to enable this to happen. They have provided CPD tailored to our needs, support and advice and useful resources. EKOs personalised approach has empowered and prepared all our staff to embrace outdoor learning resulting in children having fun outside, developing confidence and embedding the learning they are doing in the classroom. I thoroughly recommend EKO CPD support. “
Sandra Lamond, Headteacher, St Mary and St Chad CE (VC) First School, Brewood, November 2018
“As the lead for outdoor learning it has been invaluable working with EKO to set up our own provision of learning outdoors. Rachel’s experience as a school teacher, coupled with her skills and training in forest schools, has meant she has been able to help us as non-forest school trained staff to develop an enriching outdoor curriculum for our children. EKO has helped to guide us through the steps to set up and run a session safely while embracing the forest school ethos. Through CPD sessions for staff and team-teaching lessons EKO has begun to give teaching staff more confidence in how to deliver outdoor learning sessions.
Jo Scotton, Outdoor Learning Lead Teacher, St Mary and St Chad CE (VC) First School Brewood, November 20