On 9th January Fiona Danks and Jo Schofield, authors of the Going Wild books were invited to give the key note Margaret Collis Lecture at the ASE Conference, which they saw as a wonderful opportunity to speak to an audience of mainly primary school teachers about all of the exciting opportunities the natural world offers for teaching not only about science but right across the curriculum.
They were able to demonstrate how many of the fun and creative activities featured in their books are relevant to the curriculum and can easily be used in the school grounds or in a local park to deliver outdoor education on a regular basis on the doorstep. They believe that this approach gets over most of the barriers to taking classes of children outside. The slides attached below show a couple of ideas which they have developed with a school in London, using the park next door to the school and the school grounds.
Their key message to the conference was to stress the importance and benefits of reconnecting children with the natural world but also to excite them about all of the possibilities offered by the natural world for teaching and learning. The audience was very responsive and appreciative and Jo and Fiona hope that they might now feel able to use the outdoors more creatively in their teaching.