The benefits of the Outdoor Classroom

Our preschoolers enjoyed our farm theme, and we have moved on to Pond and Butterflies.

Katrina Trask has wonderful outdoor space, as well as proximity to Congress Park,  both of which gave us ample opportunity to get outside and explore our recent themes.

Getting outside is so important for our preschoolers, and really… everyone!

Studies show that kids who play outside are smarter, happier, more attentive, and less anxious than kids who spend more time indoors.

Spending time outside assists with not only gross motor skill development, but also language, social, and cognitive skill development, as well.

Although time outside is built in to every school day, here’s how we added in some extra time over the past few weeks:

 

We made some Muddy Pigs outside one day, using brown paint and some small sponges. BONUS: Being outside meant there was no worry about the mess! 😉

Getting ready to toss some "mud!" Great hand-eye coordination practice!
Getting ready to toss some “mud!” Great hand-eye coordination practice, too!
In need of a bath!
A pig in need of a bath!

We also have fun hoeing, and driving tractors across the “field” in our sandbox area.

Working on the "Farm"
Working on the “Farm”

 

One day last week we took a field trip to Congress Park, with a scavenger hunt checklist, to view the ducks, pond, and insects up close. It was a beautiful morning!

IMG_5211
We found some ducks, and marked them off our list!

Watching the ducks

 

As the weather continues to warm up, we will be using our “Outdoor Classroom” more and more. 🙂

 

Keep Playing!

 

~Suzanne