Experienced, highly qualified, and award-winning practitioners delivering top quality outdoor training & education




Transference of Skills, Attitudes, and Values, Learnt in Outdoor Education in Relation to Progress in Classroom-Based Learning

© BJHoward HUNTER Outdoor Training

Much of what we do has a desired agenda - an overt agenda - linked to improvement in other spheres of life. We strive to follow the progress of clients whether adults or children to ascertain if what we've put them through actually makes any difference. We want to make it clear however that, as an organisation we (ie Instructors) do not 'target track'; staff in schools who accompany us may do this; we don't.

What follows is some  evidence that what we do does make a difference. It follows a one-session [one hour] per week per pupil primary school course [for Yrs. 4-6] that has embraced all outdoor education offered it by HUNTER Outdoor Training; pupils, staff, Senior Management, Head, and Governors are all, to a man, on-side, and looking to see even more development in '09-'10. The Programme is wide and varied from problem-solving type life-skills challenges, through first-aid courses, survival skills, and environmental studies.

Pupil 1

"She feels she concentrates more on her work in class now, as she has learned to concentrate and focus on Outdoor Education tasks. Her work rate and application [in class] have certainly improved along with the standard of what she is producing this year."

Pupil 2

"He enjoys coming to school on Outdoor Education days. He likes 'being out' of the class. He has behavioural difficulties but this year he has settled more readily into class routines and has been less volatile."

Pupil 3

"He is an able child, and he says he feels Outdoor Education has improved his knowledge of Geography and made him more aware of connections, with things learned in class, to the real world."

Pupil 4

"He stays more focussed on a task. He says it's [Outdoor Education] made him realise that he isn't always right or his idea isn't always the best. It's made him listen more to others' ideas."

Pupil 5

"He feels able to share his ideas more. He has certainly contributed more in class discussions than earlier in the year."

Pupil 6

"He feels more confident now. He is a quiet lad, but certainly in class and small groups he is more willing to contribute. His attitude towards work, while never bad, means now he is willing to give it a try instead of waiting for help or doing nothing. He produces more work."

Pupil 7

"She feels she listens better. Says listening to Mr. Howard's instructions is important - to know what to do, and listening to others' ideas is more helpful. Also the physical aspect of Outdoor Education appeals to her nature." 

© BJHoward HUNTER Outdoor Training

Comments from a different class's group of boys, normally inseparable, normally needing 'redirection', and some 're-building':

Pupil 1

Enjoys 'team-work' and is much, much, more willing to co-operate with others; previously he was very much a 'me, me, me' child.

Pupil 2

Dislikes PE and Games but enjoys tramping around the field and jogging from co-ordinate to co-ordinate [in orienteering.]

Pupil 3

Easily distracted and talks constantly / fools around, but likes the practical outdoor science, mapping, and survival skills, and as a result will work sensibly as a team-member - is always keen to do well and complete the Outdoor Education work.

Pupil 4

"I could listen to Mr. Howard's stories all day!" "It/he makes you think how to do things."

Pupil 5

[Has very poor English skills and usually dislikes anything to do with reading / writing]. Is happy to record any "How to......." from a practical task and will contribute confidently to oral activities and discussions.

© BJHoward HUNTER Outdoor Training

Merrylands Primary School Centre of Excellence for Outdoor Education

Course Evaluation:

Teachers comments :

Do you consider that the content of the outdoor topics deleivered have enhanced (or otherwise) the classroom work undertaken by the pupils?

"Yes, definitely; sessions delivered.....helped develop childrens' self esteem...also enabled them to co-operate and respect each other more. The skills used in Outdoor Education sessions such as team building and problem solving were seen being used in other subjects such as PE and Maths."

"Yes, particularly skills that are transferable where these have been covered there has been obvious enhancement."

"Yes! The outdoor sessions have involved the children and captured their enthusiasm. The activities undertaken by the children allow them to make positive links between work in the classroom and practical applications."

"Yes, the children are able to develop their collaboration skills. Their attitude towards challenges is improving. They are also able to use map reading skills more readily in class."

Comment on the delivery of the outdoor themes and topics regarding eg clarity, relevance, duration, complexity etc..

"The delivery is always clear and concise; the children always know what to do."

"Very good - stretches the more-able, whilst teamwork supports the less able. Themes [are] clearly delivered. Good mixture of themes, sometimes leading to work followed up, sometimes supporting class curriculum, sometimes extending the curriculum and introducting new directions."

"Very good; always clearly delivered; stretches the more able pupils while supporting less able."

"Children always challenged and motivated; I learn more about the class as an observer of the 'natural behaviour'!."

"All good, for Year 4 the complexity is fantastic; I think the children are intellectually and physically challenged every week."

"The delivery of the outdoor sessions is outstanding. To have an Instructor who is so experienced and enthusiastic about the job he does not only inspired my pupils but enables [them] to find things out that they may not have learnt within the classroom."

What do you see as being the advantages of involving the pupils in an Outdoor Project?

"......developing self esteem, taking personal responsibility, co-operating and respecting the needs of others, appreciating and understanding the world around them, enhances practical problem solving and teamwork skills." 

".....another 'view' of education, encourages out-of-the-box thinking, out of their comfort zone, another area for pupils to succeed in, self esteem/team-work/co-operation.

".....learning without paper, team-working, fresh air, social skills [development], first aid skills learnt, learning about nature, orienteering skill building, improving confidence and independence."

"Appeals to different learning styles so encourages less academic children as well as able and above."

"Active participation for all children."

© BJHoward HUNTER Outdoor Training

February 2010