February & March 2023 Outdoor Learning Ideas
#TMO4LearningChallenge: Activity Ideas from February & March!
Spring is in the air and we have so many resources to share with you for the winding down of winter and the fresh start to spring!
This is a portion of what we send to those participating in the #TMO4LearningChallenge each month! In this post, we’re passing on some of the ideas we share with our 4500+ Learning Challenge participants each month to support their commitment of weekly outdoor learning. For those who are not a part of this challenge, you can still have access to these outdoor learning ideas through our blog posts! We hope they also equip you with inspiration for your time outside. If you try one of these ideas we would love to hear how it went! Please email us (firstname.lastname@example.org) or tag us on Instagram (@take.me.outside) or Twitter (@takemeoutside)!
“Students look forward to the time we spend outside, and so do I! It’s a time I have opportunity to literally walk alongside students, to connect, and build relationships.” – Secondary Educator from Edmonton, AB.
2023 Winter Challenge Activity Guide
Ten featured themed days full of activities, resources, and plans to try with your learners to wrap up this winter season. Explore the activity guide here, or take a look through what we did last year for even more ideas. Even though the challenge has finished the activity guide will remain live all year long! #TMOWinterChallenge ☃️ #DéfiHivernal
Global Encounters & the Canadian Wildlife Federation
The program brings together students from across the world through live video conferences that explore global issues and the potential youth have to shape a better common future.
These particular events happen in partnership with the Canadian Wildlife Federation, but check out ALL the programs from Global Encounters for both primary and secondary students to see how you can engage your learners in a variety of important topics from Indigenous History Month to World Oceans Day.
|Movers, Sleepers and Tough Guys
As Canadians we know winter is tough, but imagine what our native wildlife must go through! This lesson uses appealing activities to develop an understanding of winter survival mechanisms in animals. An active outdoor component also engages students in the exploration of the dynamic natural world that surrounds us in winter. This resource enables students to:
Resource can be found in full HERE!
Major snowfalls are generally associated with winter storm systems that move across the country. The purpose of this exercise is to demonstrate the relationship between the areas of heavy snowfall and the movement of the winter cyclone air masses.
Resource can be found in full HERE!
Outside for 5
Spring into learning outside! When students go outdoors, they become more confident, attentive, creative, and cooperative. That’s why we’re excited to promote #OutsideFor5 — a pledge campaign that encourages educators to incorporate a lesson or activity at least 5 minutes a day, 5 days a week, or any meaningful amount of time. Visit OutsideFor5.com to take the pledge, explore resources, and explore ways to support the social-emotional wellness of your students and school community.
EcoSchools Canada: Young Reporters for the Environment
Young Reporters for the Environment (YRE) Canada is a national environmental education program that offers youth the opportunity to amplify their voices, raise awareness and advocacy on local environmental/climate issues through critical thinking, creativity and reporting. Participants in two age categories (11-14, and 15-18) investigate and report on environmental issues, and propose solutions, by using video, photography or writing.
Ideas from the community 💡 Here’s what some Learning Challenge participants were up to last year:
Intermediate Educator in Fernie, BC:
“As a teacher, the biggest (specific) highlight for me this year was spending time building “snail rafts” by the river. This was a relatively simple activity and we arrived with a plan, but the space and timing was aligned to allow the land to be our teacher. This was a highlight because these moments are what I aim for in my outdoor practice, but not what families always think they need. The next highlight for me was the simple moments on our reflective walks at the end of each week. Students always had the most amazing comments, reflections, and conversations with each other during these walks that they reluctantly agreed to take part in. The students would probably tell you that some highlights were being able to go ski in Alberta, snowshoeing, XC skiing, geocaching, and exploring options to play various sports.”
Primary & Intermediate Educator in Surrey, BC:
“I am thinking that Mystery Science with Doug has been a wonderful addition and support to outdoor learning. It is so interesting and approachable with a variety of entry points for all the exceptionalities, ages and curriculum objectives. Mystery Science also has a variety of follow up activities which are excellent. One of the most powerful learning opportunities was heading outside with magnets and baggies and collecting magnetic material from the school gravel area. The students were on task and had so much fun while learning about magnetism in a truly authentic way. We brought in the magnetic material and tested it on a variety of items. We also made pictures and used the magnetic material to ‘draw’ with. Another challenge was to have the students design a game with magnets – the winner was the magnet ring toss! The students begged to work more with magnets – which we will do in June!”
|Indigenous Harvest Calendar
|Outdoor Education Toolkit for Grades 1 – 8
Educational Project by New Hampshire Farm to School, New Hampshire Indigenous Collaborative Collective, and Cowasuck Band of the Pennacook-Abenaki People.
This collaborative educational project offers knowledges, recipes, and activities, organized by the Abenaki 13 Moons Calendar and its seasonal foods: Spring, or Siguan (See-g-wan); Summer, or Niben (Nee-ben); Autumn, or Tagw8go (Taag-wohn-go); and Winter, or Pebon (Pah-bon).
Education Toolkit by the Ontario Physical and Health Education Association (Ophea).
The Outdoor Education Toolkit was developed to enrich and promote a culture of safety-mindedness and increase teacher awareness, confidence, and preparedness to teach outdoor education.