Anyone who has seen the impact that learning and playing outdoors has on children knows how powerful such experiences can be. Learning outdoors creates lasting memories, helps build a greater awareness of the environment, provides more opportunities to think independently, and gets children feeling challenged and excited by learning. Children are more active when they play outdoors; It is essential for their healthy development and enjoyment of childhood.
Building on the success of the 2016 campaign, our aim is to get millions of children around the world learning and playing outside across three dates in 2017 — 18 May, 7 September and 12 October. For some schools, this will be an opportunity to try learning outside the classroom for the first time. For outdoor learning pros, the day will be a celebration of what they are doing already and a chance to inspire other schools to get involved. For everyone, Outdoor Classroom Day will be a catalyst for more time outdoors every day.
Sign up to be part of the Outdoor Classroom Day movement today!
Lessons learnt outdoors, whether maths, science or language, often stay with us for life. Being outdoors helps children focus, boosts creativity and imagination, and can simply be more fun.
Children who have the freedom to play today — making friends, getting lost in the moment, having fun — are better prepared for whatever tomorrow throws at them. Playing helps children build friendships, test their own boundaries and solve their own problems. It’s central to a child’s development and their enjoyment of childhood.
If you want to dig a bit deeper and get even more inspired, check out the videos in this showreel…
In 2012 a handful of schools in London, UK, celebrated outdoor learning as part of a new campaign, Empty Classroom Day. By 2015, over 600 schools in 15 countries got involved. In 2016, Unilever’s Dirt is Good team joined the campaign’s founders to take the movement global, in partnership with the social enterprise Project Dirt. To help the campaign’s global traction — with advice from school leaders, play experts and NGO partners that were getting involved — the campaign became Outdoor Classroom Day around the rest of the world.
In 2016, almost half a million children in 52 countries celebrated outdoor learning and play as part of the movement in June (Empty Classroom Day) and in October (Outdoor Classroom Day). In 2017, to reach more schools, more children, more communities, the campaigns were brought together under one name and the truly global Outdoor Classroom Day movement was born.
“Academic research shows that active play is the natural and primary way that children learn”
Sir Ken Robinson, leading expert in education, creativity and human development
Help to spread the word about Outdoor Classroom Day! Share this page and get friends and colleagues on board.
Thanks for joining the movement, we can’t wait to see what you get up to on the day! Please share this with your colleagues and friends to help us make it possible for every child to get outdoors to learn and play every day 🙂