Playing outside presents unique opportunities for exploration and learning for children at school. It is important for them to see the different characteristics in their environment such as plants, flowers and how vegetables grow. Children enjoy the greenery, flowers in bloom especially observing and discovering passion fruit growing in the playground. They enjoy looking at the different birds that visit the playground occasionally and not forgetting the insects and worms, that try to hide away from them! All these developments provide children with new experiences and opportunities such as learning about the different seasons, and life cycles of plants and animals. Children also learn to see their environment through a different lens and progress from being unconscious to conscious observers in the environment.
Outdoor play encourages children to develop crucial skills necessary for their physical development. It helps with their cognitive and social/emotional development where they learn about turn taking, sharing and other positive behavioural skills. They learn about the world around them, invent and play games with their friends. These interactions help with their communication skills, cooperation and organisational skills.
Ayesha Meer – Children’s House Program Coordinator & Teacher