Teacher time and confidence - how WildTime Learning can help you.
Nicholas Garrick, director of Lighting Up Learning, shares the rationale behind the WildTime Learning hub - and why he thinks it's so useful for schools.
As a teacher and Hub leader for the South West Learning in Natural Environments Hub for the past three years, I know that teacher time and confidence are two of the biggest factors that affect curriculum design, and ultimately learning experiences. Many teachers desperately want to get classes outside, learning in real and natural environments, but current pressures of teaching to date are the most extreme they have ever been.
Everything about schools has changed
Everything about schools has changed in the past five years. Everything. I know this because I am a teacher and have to adapt and change with the system, and it is because of this that we created, in collaboration with The Wild Network and the Natural Connections Demonstration Project: Wild Time Learning.
There are many amazing sites and resources out there for teachers but this is part of the issue; resource saturation has become the problem. There is too much, spread too thinly often written by non-practitioners.
Wild Time Learning however is different from other platforms out there. It helps teachers to search ideas using filters designed by teachers. The ability to search by duration or location of activity, including age range has been greatly received. Moreover, because it is a series of question-driven learning stimuli, rather than a series of lesson plans (created by people trying desperately to link all learning to the national curriculum); they can get a sense of how learning could be enhanced by being outdoors. Every activity is adaptable and designed as a starting point. Activities are ideas generators, there for teachers to use both their knowledge of their class and setting to enhance and adapt already great provision.
Swimming, not sinking
We have to be careful that through good intentions of supporting teachers by creating sets of lesson plans and resources, that we are not in fact drowning them. The sector also has to be mindful of not demonising the classroom by saying that all ‘outdoor learning’ is somehow better than indoor learning. A rubbish lesson outside is still a rubbish lesson.
Wild Time Learning is a collaborative, collective platform that supports taking learning outdoors, helping teachers to ask: ‘Where is the best place for that learning?’. Surely that has to be better than spoon-feeding?
Nicholas Garrick, Primary Teacher and School Leader
Director, Lighting up Learning
Get your login today...
To get a login for the WildTime Learning trial site, please email Natalie and ask for one. Then let us know how you get on.
More about outdoor learning...
What is a classroom? The Wild Network's Tamsin Constable on changing perspectives.
Get outside... Help change your school's attitude to outdoor learning, with the Natural Connections Demonstration Project's fantastic results.
Play boosts confidence & happiness in children. Yes, we know you know, but it's a great read!