Highland teacher training event gives orienteering top marks for outdoor education
At a recent training event for Highland primary school teachers – opinions of participants have shown that orienteering and team building activities are potentially the most useful for delivering outdoor education among pupils.
Fourteen primary teachers and Active Schools Co-ordinators attended an outdoor learning continuous professional development session held at Brora Primary School on 16 February. It was led by Highland Active Schools Co-ordinators Bridget Thomas based in Fort William and Louise Nadin based in Brora.
Bridget and Louise introduced the Outdoor Learning Cards resource pack that has been developed by the Outdoor Education Adviser’s Panel which aims to promote active learning across the curriculum, healthy lifestyles and positive attitudes through high quality outdoor learning experiences.
The group worked their way through, and sampled four main practical elements featured in the cards including: journeying, team building, bouldering and orienteering. They then discussed the relative merits of each activity to their own curricular or extra curricular circumstances.
There was general consensus in the feedback, that orienteering and team building sections were the most useful to members of this particular group while the journeying element had some ideas that would transfer well to primary children but was essentially a first steps towards Duke of Edinburgh for younger secondary pupils. The bouldering section was only felt to be of great value where schools had access to a bouldering or climbing wall.
Bridget Thomas said: “These new learning resources are widening the possibilities of education in the great outdoors that link in with Curriculum for Excellence. Hopefully more children in the Highlands will be able to benefit from the experience of teaching outside the traditional confines of the classroom.”
Teachers who attended the training day were from Helmsdale, Tomnacross, Brora, Reay and Rogart Primary Schools.
Source: The Highland Council