The One Project (OUTDOOR NATURE, ENVIRONMENT)

Angela Mcgeady (Lead Educator for Outdoors) says…

‘We identified that there was an increasing number of children who needed additional support with speech and language and personal, social and emotional development. We believe that by removing some of the barriers to communication, through exploring the outdoors in small groups, encourages a sense of well-being and develops a strong sense of self identity.’

We have developed a programme that has allowed some of our children access to our local natural environments to experience nature and all it can offer and to help them with the skills they will need for the future.

 

The ONE (Outdoor, Nature, Environment) Project was created in September 2015 to give children the opportunity to go out once a week with Angela and an Explorer Guide (from their setting) on the mini bus to local natural sites. They visit the woods, local beach, playing fields or occasionally their own nursery site.

Each week they explore something different, they have painted with mud, jumped in muddy puddles, picked blackberries and even made dens and had hot chocolate and cookies while inside. The children are free to explore, run and be as loud as they want, they can connect with the world around them and learn about their local environment and what nature can offer.

The children’s progress in Personal, Social and Emotional, Communication and Language and Knowledge and Understanding of their World is carefully documented and tracked throughout the year and this is shared with their key carer and parents. The progress of the children that are part of the focus group, shows an amazing 90% of children reach or exceed the expected developmental stages, in those areas.

Parents are invited to attend a celebration outing with their children at the end of the year, to share their children’s discoveries and new skills.

Parents have commented on the value of this programme to their children’s development and positive dispositions for future learning.

Each week the children explore something different, they have painted with mud, jumped in muddy puddles, picked blackberries and even made dens and had hot chocolate and cookies while inside. They can connect with the world around them and learn about their local environment and what nature can offer.

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