Natural England, working with The Council for Learning Outside the Classroom, led a wide coalition of partners in shaping an evidence-led proposal for Natural Connections, which aims ‘to reconnect children with their local natural environments by stimulating both the demand for and the supply of services to support learning outside the classroom in natural environments’ (Natural England, 2012). Natural Connections will oversee the delivery of a three year Demonstration Project during 2012-2015 to test the effectiveness of a new delivery model in achieving the above aim, with particular focus on supporting schools in areas of multiple deprivation that are currently providing little or no learning outside the classroom in natural environments.
This document reports on a study of 38 teachers and school leaders in primary, secondary and special schools with widely varying levels of outdoor learning. It focuses on their views of outdoor learning and their ideas about the Natural Connections Demonstration Project.
Natural England is also working with The Council for Learning Outside the Classroom, the London Legacy Development Corporation and other partners to facilitate the development of a project aimed at improving support for East London schools and their local communities to enable more children to benefit from high quality play and learning experiences in their local green spaces including the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. Like Natural Connections, the East London Outdoor Learning Project would also focus on supporting schools in areas of multiple deprivation that are currently providing little or no learning outside the classroom in natural environments.