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Outdoor learning activities – 20 cheap and easy ideas for EYFS

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Three-page PDF

Key Stage



Years R-2

Even in the depths of a cold winter there are plenty of outdoor learning activities to try in EYFS that will encourage exploration, curiosity and child-led learning.

Building an outdoor area that contains lots of open-ended nature play is neither hard nor expensive, and even the smallest of concrete areas can be transformed with a little thought.

Don’t believe us? This outdoor learning activities download contains 20 ways to develop learning across the EYFS without breaking the bank.

Outdoor learning activities

Activities with sticks

One of the most versatile and freely available natural resources is your common or garden stick. They’re easy to collect, available in an array of shapes, sizes and weights, and no outdoor learning environment should be without a store of them.

As with all areas of outdoor learning, children need to learn safe practice as part of their ongoing risk assessment skills and with good, clear boundaries, sticks become a wonderful addition rather than a potential weapon!

Activities with mud

Far from being a nuisance to be avoided or scraped off wellies, mud has plenty of learning potential.

Bug activities

Just like mud, creepy crawlies and other creatures are never far away, whether you’re in the countryside or the city.

Loose parts activities

Natural loose parts such as stones, pebbles and shells offer open-ended exploration for children in any outdoor setting. Make sure you have lots of different shapes, colours and sizes to maximise learning potential.

Activities with wood

No outdoor environment is complete without a good supply of wood in the form of logs and bark, both of which have lots to offer young children.

Kirstine Beeley is an author, preschool manager and educational consultant working with settings and local authorities across the UK. Explore more nature activities that fit in with the Reggio Emilia approach.

Outdoor learning activities PDF
Outdoor learning activities – 20 cheap and easy ideas for EYFS
PrimaryArt & DesignEnglish ...

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