We all know that children learn by discovering and perceiving the world in the most comprehensive way through their senses. Nature allows them to further develop their senses of sight, hearing, and smell. Especially in the impact of the epidemic, the traditional teaching model has been affected. Communication between students and teachers became difficult, especially during the online class period. So it became a trend to transfer the classes to the outdoor area. If you also want to take your students outdoors and organize an outdoor classroom, the following tips will be important for you to keep in mind. From how to organize to the event tent you may need, giving you the most detailed tips on how to prepare an outdoor classroom.
Benefits of Outdoor Classroom
There are more benefits to taking classes outdoors than just being able to maintain social distance. Children can breathe fresh air outside without a mask than indoors where the air is not circulating. And outdoors allowing them to concentrate more and study more effectively than when they are indoors.
It can enhance their social and practical skills, and there is enough space outdoors for children to move and communicate. The outdoor environment allows for direct contact rather than textbook writing.
Stimulates curiosity and promotes thinking. The natural environment can bring something different to students, stimulate imagination and enhance creativity. It is this diversity that fosters keen and adaptable senses and promotes independent thinking.
Nature can relieve stress and improve health. Green plants and vistas can be stress-relieving and relaxing for both teachers and students. Especially with sunlight, it can replenish the trace elements needed in the body. It also inspires children to be physically active outdoors during break times. It avoids obesity and overweight while strengthening the immune system.
How to organize an outdoor classroom
1.Prepare any equipment needed
Although the teaching is done outdoors, teaching props are still necessary. You need to put some teaching props in this space, such as a whiteboard or a portable display. This will make it easier for the teacher to conduct the class and allow the students to see clearly what is being taught today. It also allows them to focus more. Of course, there are chairs, individual seats to ensure that students have space to move around, and a good social distance.
Prepare some storage boxes that can be filled with students' notebooks and homework. You can also use them as tables, and use the storage boxes to take away the trash at the end of the course. Make a list of the equipment needed for the classroom and organize it. Including some disinfection equipment, and first aid supplies to be prepared for everything. This also eliminates the need to go back to the classroom to get the equipment.
2.Be prepared for all weather conditions
In the outdoors, you need to be prepared for all eventualities. For an outdoor classroom, you will probably need an event tent to avoid the weather. Depending on the season or number of people, you can choose whether you need a canopy tent or a large tent. canopy tent 10x20 can accommodate up to 20 people, while a large tent can accommodate up to 125 people.
If you organize outdoor classes in summer and have to stay in one place for a long time. Dazzling sunlight and UV rays are not a good thing, and the heat and light can easily distract students' attention. So you will need canopy tents to protect students from sunburn and to keep them cool in the heat. It's best to choose a screen tent with a mesh design to avoid mosquitoes and keep the air circulating.
And in the winter, a tent with sidewall can play a warm role. There are still windows in the sidewalls, so students can see the outside. And the waterproof fabric can resist rain. Both sidewalls are removable, which means they can be used regardless of the season. It is important to note that if you need to use the tent for a long time, you need to reinforce the tent with stakes and ropes. And make sure to stay away from the fire to prevent safety accidents.
3.Use of natural features
The natural environment can inspire and create ideas that will allow students to write for a specified amount of time. I believe that writing in an outdoor environment will be more creative than indoors. Have students learn to observe and have them pay attention to things around them such as trees or birds. Then draw them, which is a great exercise in concentration and observation. For preschoolers, math can be incorporated into nature. Using nature objects and wide-open spaces can make numbers more tangible.
4.More close to nature
One of the best ways to get close to nature is to grow your plants or vegetables. From insects and animals to plants, giving students hands-on experience with nature is the best lesson. Use garden beds and portable greenhouses to grow some simple plants inside. This enhances hands-on skills and knowledge about gardening, and successfully raising plants gives them a sense of accomplishment and promotes self-confidence. The lessons are lifelong, fun, and rewarding compared to regular lessons. Successful plantings can also become a new landscape for the school, sustainable and environment-friendly.
5.Let them move
When it comes to teaching outdoors, that means activities. The outdoors is definitely a better place to move your body than in the limited indoor space. It's a good idea to move around for a while after class, or you can take them for a walk around campus. Getting the body moving, relaxes the tired brain and makes it more focused on exploring unknown paths. In the outdoor classroom, you can also organize students into teams and start playing games. Team games improve collaboration and social skills, and team activities promote communication.
Regardless of how long it takes for the pandemic to end, our classes can become flexible. Teaching outdoors is a way for students to reap the physical and mental benefits. They are able to see things from a new perspective and improve their abilities and thinking. It's also more fun and relaxing for the teachers, and they get closer to the students. It brings emotional benefits to both students and teachers. If you are interested in an outdoor classroom, follow the instructions above. Bring your students for an outdoor teaching session in the new year.