We’re delighted to report that since then CNN has picked up the story and featured it in their ‘Schools of Thought’. The story features the students at Burgess-Peterson Elementary school on the east side of Atlanta and the fully operational kitchen-garden that they have created with the help of Waterson and his team of volunteers. Teachers and children have continued to succeed and have reaped the benefits, quite literally, by harvesting eight pounds of fresh produce from their labors for the Thanksgiving holiday last year.
So, why have we ignored this crucial element to educating children for so long?
Allowing children to have hands-on problem solving experiences deepens their understanding and encourages further exploration in all subjects. In an age where many children lack social interaction and rely on television or computer games for stimulation, opportunities to explore the real world are often far too few.
Initiatives like Waterson’s are helping promote an holistic approach to education; one where finding out the answers is about more than just reading a textbook.
Forest School is another way to allow children to experience problem solving and learning tasks outdoors.
The concept originated from Sweden in the 1950s and was adopted by Denmark soon after. The UK has expanded on the system from the early 1990s and now supports a large number of projects around the country.
The philosophy of Forest School is to encourage, educate and inspire through positive experiences and participation in a woodland environment. By engaging, motivating and setting achievable tasks, children learn to respect not only the environment around them but also their peers and communities.
Older children are able to have the opportunity to learn how to put up shelters, prepare a fire, produce weaving to enhance structures and cook popcorn in a home-made ‘corn cooker’. Whilst younger children get to experience bug searching, nature collections and fishing, which all prove to be great favorites.
Busy hands and busy minds take in a better understanding of their wider world when presented in an outdoor setting. Like Waterson’s gardening project, children find a use for math, economics and language skills when they understand how, for example, their food arrives on their plate or how their home is built.
Here at 3B Scientific we have a hands-on approach to science with plenty of tools and equipment to help you create your own outdoor learning environment.
- Portable Laboratories
- Botany Experiments & Kits
- Environmental Science Experiments
- Pocket Compass'
- Magnifying glasses & microscopes
As well-known educationalist Margaret McMillan once said: “The best class-room and the richest cupboard are roofed only by the sky.”
Contact us now if you'd like more information
on how to provide hands-on science for your children or school.
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