Take me outside: An introduction to outdoor learning

By Victoria McDowell


Subscription This course is available as a part of an ECA Learning Hub annual subscription


National Quality Standard
QA1Educational program and practice
QA3Physical environment
Australian Professional Standards for Teachers
3Plan for and implement effective teaching and learning
4Create and maintain supportive and safe learning environments


Victoria McDowell
Victoria McDowell has a Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood) degree from Macquarie University, specialising in early education for children from birth to eight years. She has more than 16 years of experience working in a range of different roles in a variety of services across the sector—including, but not limited to, early childhood teacher and...
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This introductory course is about the importance of outdoor learning in young children’s lives. It will inspire you to create an outdoor learning environment full of wonder, curiosity and active play that will stimulate healthy risk-taking and support the development of skills such as agency, self-resilience and confidence. The course will also explain the role of active play in the outdoors and help you facilitate experiences based on children’s interests and needs. You will discover theories and approaches to planning in outdoor learning environments and find out how to overcome challenges in different service settings and locations. You will also be introduced to the concept of ‘going beyond the gate’ and how to embed this into your early learning curriculum.


In this course you will:

  • explore why outdoor learning matters
  • learn how to create rich outdoor learning spaces
  • investigate ways to overcome barriers to outdoor learning
  • examine the value of intentional teaching in the outdoor environment and how this can enhance a child’s need for physical activity
  • discover how to help children manage healthy risks and challenges outdoors


Duration: 2 hours