Outdoor Learning

Outdoor Learning Subject Leader: Mrs N Butcher

Outdoor Learning helps to increase our pupil’s confidence, problem-solving and self-esteem through exploration, and team building and encourages them to learn how to access and nurture the environment. 


Children are given various opportunities to engage in activities which will develop their appreciation of the natural environment. Planned activities and child-initiated exploration will enrich children’s learning across all areas of the curriculum.

pupils playing around in woodlands adventure at eyfs at cliffe woods primary school
pupils smiling during outdoor learning


FS and KS1 children are timetabled one afternoon per week at our Woodland Adventure area. KS2 children use the Woodland Adventure area on an ad hoc basis. All year groups have access to the wildlife area in the KS2 playground. Annual trips to farms, the beach and other locations offer additional outdoor learning opportunities.

Activities are planned to enhance learning across all subjects.


Children will develop an appreciation of seasonal change, plant growth, animal habitats and natural materials.

Children will be able to talk about the features of different environments and appreciate the impact we can have on the environment both locally and globally. Children will develop a sense of responsibility for looking after their immediate environment.

pupils playing in puddles during outdoor learning at cliffe woods primary school

Benefits of Outdoor Learning 

Outdoor Learning promotes the holistic development of a child.  It is particularly suited to children who struggle, for various reasons, to learn in a traditional classroom setting, as well as providing all children with a positive outlook which is then transferred to the classroom where they are found to be more motivated and have increased concentration levels.

Physical Development: Development of gross motor skills, building muscle, spatial awareness, balance, coordination and stamina.  Fine Motor skills are enhanced when using hand tools as well as hand-eye coordination.

Emotional and Mental wellbeing:  Spending time in woodland areas is calming and reduces stress.

Social Development: Development of communication and language skills, the ability to share, take turns and work as a team.

Behaviour: Research has shown that being outside has a calming influence on the brain, thereby improved behaviour is noticed.

Self-Regulation: The ability to recognise and manage risk as well as understand the reason for boundaries and rules.

Increased self-confidence and self-esteem:  Learning new skills, and taking risks when using hand tools develops a sense of responsibility and pride. Increased knowledge, awareness, respect and understanding of the natural environment.

Creative Development: Through free play and exploration, children become naturally inquisitive of the natural environment, using it as a provocation for storytelling and role play.

Outdoor Learning Curriculum Overview


SEND Information

We ensure that SEND and disadvantaged children are given the necessary support in class to fully access the Outdoor Learning Curriculum and equal opportunities are given for all to be confident in approaching any problem within the world around them.

Outdoor Learning Extra Resources