30 Days of Outdoor Learning: Starting September 16, 2019
We were excited to host a 30-day Walking Curriculum challenge that started on September 16, 2019! Educators around the globe (preK through high school) took part in learning outside for part of the day–rain or snow or shine–for 30 days. Through this initiative student got outside for learning across Canada and the USA, in Mexico, Spain, England and Australia to name a few places. The best part? Many educators are still doing it!
With The Walking Curriculum: Evoking Wonder And Developing A Sense of Place as a resource and guide for outdoor learning educators can engage students in imagination- and inquiry-focused walks designed to enrich their understanding of the regular curriculum. Outdoor, walking-based learning fuels cross-curricular activities that students pursue throughout the rest of their day.
This page offers you support for moving your teaching outdoors! You will find free resources, information for parents, tips for successful school wide involvement and more. Be sure to check out the new resources we’ve added since our last 30-day challenge. Join the movement to #getoutside!
What is the Walking Curriculum?
Playgrounds and schoolyards are underused resources for ecological learning.
The Walking Curriculum is one example of an approach to teaching called Imaginative Ecological Education. This is a Place-based approach to education that affords learners opportunities to learn with/in the natural and cultural contexts where they go to school. What sets Walking Curriculum and other IEE activities apart are the use of tools (cognitive tools) that actively engage emotion and imagination in learning. Basic premise: imagination fuels meaning-making.
Learn more: Walking Curriculum/IEE initiatives are currently being developed/led by Dr. Gillian Judson, Executive Director of the Centre for Imagination, Research and Culture at Simon Fraser University.
Why walk? Why take learning outside?
“The simple act of taking a walk—a walk with a curricular focus or purpose—can have multiple positive consequences. For example, walking can support students’ health and wellbeing. It can also emotionally and imaginatively engage learners by changing the “context” of learning. On a deeper level, a new level of curriculum relevance can emerge for students when learning occurs in real-world contexts. Going even deeper, walking-based practice can support students in developing a sense of Place. … Sense of Place is what can change how our students understand the world of which they are part—it can help them re-imagine their relationship with the natural and cultural communities they live in.”
~Gillian Judson, A Walking Curriculum (2018)
NEW Resource: The Deep Time Walk
More Resources to Support You
Click here to download an information letter for parents.
Try out these FREE teaching activities for K-12 from the Imaginative Ecological Education website. Of course, there are many different activities you can try with your students outside. Key: Engage their imaginations in learning and strive to create cross-curricular connections!
We want to see what you and your students do during the 30-day challenge! Spread the word and help motivate others to #getoutside by posting pictures of all the ways your students learn outdoors. Share images of your activities, messages about your insights or ideas, and also images of resources you notice help stimulate your students’ wonder and curiosity for learning outside.
Share the graphics below with your social media networks! Invite colleagues to #getoutside with the #walkingcurriculum for 30 days. (Drag/drop these images to your device.)