Outdoor Play

Outdoor Play

17 July 2017

With a little preparation, children can enjoy learning and discovering outdoors even on the coldest of days.  Once children are warm, dry and comfortable then learning outdoors in winter can still provide a sense of fun and wonderment.  Walking in parks with frost crunching underfoot, collecting leaves fallen to the ground and looking up to see the exposed trees, catching raindrops in containers to freeze later, or blowing air to see your warm vapour are all natural experiences for children and adults alike to delight in whilst at the same time learning about mathematical and scientific concepts.

The Early Childhood Curriculum, Te Whāriki, has five strands and providing opportunities for children to engage with the natural environment acknowledges the following strands and learning outcomes:

Wellbeing – Mana atua:

  • Keeping themselves healthy and caring for themselves – te orange nui

Belonging – Mana whenua:

  • Making connections between people, places and things in their world – te waihanga hononga
  • Taking part in caring for this place – te manaaki i te taiao

Contribution - Mana tangata:

  • Recognising and appreciating their own ability to learn – te rangatiratanga

Communication – Mana reo:

  • Recognising mathematical symbols and concepts and using them with enjoyment, meaning and purpose – he kōrero tuhituhi

Exploration – Mana aotūroa:

  • Playing, imagining, inventing and experimenting – te whakaaro me te tūhurahura i te pūtaiao
  • Making sense of their worlds by generating and refining working theories – te rangahau e te mātauranga