Quick summary: This activity is designed to encourage children to spend more time outside in green spaces. There is a significant body of research now available that suggests that access to ‘green spaces’ plays a significant role in assisting children to reach their full potential in terms of their development, mental and physical health and wellbeing. Green spaces provide numerous stimuli for the senses. When there is an intensity of sensorial input (multiple senses at the same time) children’s brain and physical developmental opportunities are optimised. This is critical for all human development, but particularly young children experiencing a very rapid developmental stage.
This activity is designed to help connect children to the wonders of the natural world through sensory and play-based learning.
EYLF Learning Outcome
Outcome 1: Children have a strong sense of identity
2. Children develop their emerging autonomy, interdependence, resilience and sense of agency
4. Children learn to interact in relation to others with care, empathy and respect
Outcome 2: Children are connected with and contribute to their world
1. Children develop a sense of belonging to groups and communities and an understanding of the reciprocal rights and responsibilities necessary for active civic participation
3. Children become socially responsible and show respect for the environment
Outcome 3: Children have a strong sense of wellbeing
2. Children take increasing responsibility for their own health and physical wellbeing
Outcome 4: Children are involved and confident learners
1. Children develop dispositions for learning such as curiosity, cooperation, confidence, creativity, commitment, enthusiasm, persistence, imagination and reflexivity
2. Children develop a range of skills and processes such as problem solving, enquiry, experimentation, hypothesising, researching and investigating
3. Children resource their own learning through connecting with people , place, technologies, and natural and processed materials
Outcome 5: Children are effective communicators
1. Children interact verbally and non verbally with others for a range of purposes
2. Children engage with a range of texts and get meaning from these texts
3. Children express ideas and make meaning using a range of media
5. Children use information and communication technologies to access information, investigate ideas and represent their thinking
Equipment needed: You will need a range of pots or containers; soil; mulch or straw; a range of seeds or seedlings (depending on the activity you are going to do); clipboards; drawing materials; magnifying glasses; loose parts and art and craft materials.
- Cool Australia – Nature Time and Nature Play
- Cool Australia – Nature Craft
- Cool Australia – How to plant a plant
- Cool Australia – Edible Gardens
- Planet Ark National Tree Day – Health benefits of nature
- Nature Play WA – http://youtu.be/-vAulkMldMM
- Children and Nature Network
- Let’s reunite children and nature – http://youtu.be/dt2pY3bJCjc
The Child in Nature (http://youtu.be/wsIYWEodnz0)
Cool Australia would like to acknowledge the support of the Seedlings Early Years Education for Sustainability (EYEfS) program.