A child's education begins long before they enter a classroom. Outside, the natural world engages and awakens all the senses, drawing the child's interest with an infinite variety of colors, textures, sounds, and smells.
This month in our Primary classroom, we began taking small groups outside for nature walks. As we went from the large, busy classroom to a small group outdoors, the children became calmer and more attentive. Upon returning to the classroom, the energy was more focused and productive than before.
On our walks, we spotted giant praying mantises in their natural habitat, blending in perfectly with the brown and green leaves at the edge of the field. We listened to noisy insects in the brush and flowing water in the creek. Silence took over as we crept close to a mourning dove wandering in the grass. We gathered leaves and rocks from the ground and brought them inside to sort, scrub, and make into artwork.
We hope to bring the order, beauty, and harmony of the natural world into the classroom, to create an environment where children can follow their interests and learn through their senses.
Looking for ways to get outside with your family?
Drive to the top of Howard's Knob for a bird's eye view of Boone. See if your children can recognize familiar spots from above.
Try a bug's eye view nature walk; get low to the ground and see what your child notices.
Go for a color scavenger hunt for autumn leaves.
“How does it feel to be outside?”
“I want to stay here and look at the river.” -Aila, 4
“I think we should have a nature walk every day.” -Adalyn, 5
-Deborah, Dianne, and Tori