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Learning Outside The Classroom

Annotated Bibliography
by

Gillian Barrie

on 6 June 2013

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Transcript of Learning Outside The Classroom

Learning Outside
The Classroom Text 2 and 3 Text 4 Text 4 – Gould, T. (2011) Effective Practice in Outdoor Learning: If in doubt, let them out! Featherstone Education: Bloomsbury Publishing, London
Chapter 2 – “The importance and value of outdoor learning” p. 14-20 Text 4 – Gould, T. (2011) Effective Practice in Outdoor Learning: If in doubt, let them out! Featherstone Education: Bloomsbury Publishing, London
Chapter 2 – “The importance and value of outdoor learning” p. 14-20 Thank you for watching! Text 3 - Department for Education and Skills (DfES) (2006) Learning outside the classroom: Manifesto. Text 2 - Sime, E. and Taplin, L. (2011) Physical Development, health and well-being: the role of physical education 'outside'. In: Waite, S. Children Learning Outside the Classroom; From Birth to Eleven. London: Sage. p133-147 Text 3 - Department for Education and Skills (DfES) (2006) Learning outside the classroom: Manifesto. Text 2 - Sime, E. and Taplin, L. (2011). Physical Development, health and well-being: the role of physical education 'outside'. In: Waite, S. Children Learning Outside the Classroom; From Birth to Eleven. London: Sage. p133-147 Text 1 – Beames, S., Higgins, P. and Nicol, R. (2011) Learning Outside the Classroom; Theory and Guidelines for Practice. New York: Routledge Learning outside the classroom Text 1 The first source comes from a handbook specifically designed for practicing or trainee teachers to use to improve the amount of outdoor learning provision in their class. Through its’ chapters it highlights key ideas and concepts for individual subjects to expand learning outside the classroom (LOTC).
Chapter 4 of this handbook, entitled “Learning through Local Landscapes” concentrates on the importance of children learning history and geography through situated learning. This involves taking the classroom out to the field on which the lessons are based. The idea stems from learning beginning in the pupils’ own backyard and extending their knowledge of the places around them before progressing to learn about places or events further afield. This chapter emphasises the importance of taking Physical Education outdoors to enable extension of children’s opportunities to explore their movement. It begins by explaining the difference between the outdoor classroom and learning outside the classroom; that teaching children in the school playground cannot be counted as LOTC. It highlights this misconception to stress the need for learning outside the classroom rather than outside in the school grounds.
This chapter was written to inform and advise about LOTC in physical education and how best to overcome barriers to outdoor learning. The main points covered include establishing a class where the children are encouraged to be outdoors regardless of weather, and to ensure they are prepared to be suitably dressed for these conditions. This chapter is mostly supported by physical literacy sources. This is the notion of learning about the movement of their bodies and how to progress their physical embodiment further. The best way to do this, so this chapter suggests, is for the pupils’ current level of knowledge to be assessed and the teachers to use a scaffolding technique to build their understanding up from what they already know. This is ideally done outside the classroom as the children have more freedom to express themselves physically in a wider area.
The writers of this chapter are both lecturers in P.E. at the University of Plymouth, which suggests the information comes from a richly informed background. However, due to their expertise, the advice given in this chapter could be viewed as very one-sided, as both are experts in the field of P.E. and actively encourage learning outside the classroom. On the other hand, this chapter has a balanced argument, as they recognise the barriers to LOTC and give suggestions on how the teacher may overcome them. The Learning outside The Classroom manifesto was created 7 years ago by the previous Labour government. The aim was to recommend a number of ways LoTC should be implemented into schools, to provide a more well-rounded learning experience. This manifesto highlights some of the benefits of supporting LoTC within schools; For example, providing the option for bridges of communication to be built between the school and the wider community, as well as connecting the children’s learning with the world outside the classroom door. The manifesto also points out benefits for the school itself, such as the likelihood of raised attainment and providing the opportunity for the teacher to make cross-curricular links, e.g. a school trip to visit a Cathedral tying together History and RE lessons.
At the time of writing, the LoTC fitted in well with the government initiative ‘Every Child Matters’, as it provided the chance to fulfil the requirements for each child to stay healthy, safe and achieve/enjoy. The main points of this manifesto are: to inspire and encourage schools to use LoTC on a regular basis; to encourage teachers and support staff to endorse the manifesto; and to provide high quality learning experiences to a range of children.
The application of the LoTC manifesto in schools is not practical, due to high amounts of paperwork. Regularly taking children outside the school premises would involve countless risk assessments to ensure full safety of these children (which in turn provides for children’s safety in Every Child Matters).
However, it could be argued that the benefits outweigh the difficulties. The opportunity of the learners to see a practical application of theory in the real world will help cement the reasoning behind their lessons. A child is much more likely to learn about the effects of erosion on a riverbank if they can see it for themselves. In lessons such as Geography and History, ideally every lesson would be taught in the field, enhancing the children’s’ knowledge through experimental and investigative methods. This book talks about the necessity for teachers as practitioners to understand why the outdoor environment is so beneficial. Although mainly focused on early years, the basic reasoning behind children learning outdoors remains the same. By ensuring that a child is learning outdoors, they are more holistically developed and gain more knowledge and understanding due to their first hand experiences.
At a young stage, the first contact a child may have with a geography lesson would take place outdoors. Measuring the seasons and observing the changes throughout the year will help the children experience their learning first hand, rather than reading about it indoors. This text also stresses the possibilities which are made feasible by extending children’s learning to an outdoor area. Outdoors, it is possible for the children to work on a much larger scale, where they have more space and opportunity to be bigger, noisier and overall more adventurous. The writer of this book is an Early Years consultant with a vast amount of experience working in the Foundation Stage. He visits schools in order to recommend ways in which they can improve EYFS provision, drawing upon his own experiences. This involves a large part of providing outdoor facilities, as all aspects of indoor learning need to be represented in the outdoor classroom.
Due to a large amount of this chapter referring to first hand experiences, the importance of learning by doing (and in the correct environment) is unmistakeable in this book. Subjects such as geography, topics, P.E. and science are all recommended to be taken outdoors to allow the pupils to discover and develop their physical ability, as well as increase their activity opportunities in an otherwise sedentary school day.
The writers of this source are lecturers in Outdoor Education at the University of Edinburgh. This gives them good grounds for advising current and trainee teachers in how to implement a real environment into their teaching. However, due to their expertise and background they may over emphasise the importance of learning beyond the classroom.
The chapter stresses the significance of history and geography being taught in local areas before expanding further. This gives the pupils more opportunity to build up a relationship with the local place and develop their knowledge of the area’s background. This is also linked to Smith, 2002.
The chapter also mentions the 4 stage model of ‘Landfulness’ devised by Molly Baker. It suggests individualised stages to get the pupils thinking about the chosen place. This is especially applicable to the teaching of history in the outdoor classroom, by considering the changes made to the land over time and the formation of the terrain with regard to how it was used. Due to the high amount of evidence for the inclusion of history and geography into the outdoor environment, this text appears to recommend that these lessons would be best taught in the corresponding area. Text 1 – Beames, S., Higgins, P. and Nicol, R. (2011) Learning Outside the Classroom; Theory and Guidelines for Practice. New York: Routledge Music by
Jason Mraz & Sesame Street I do not own any of these pictures
All rights go to the original photographers.
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