Nature Play

At Mel Maria Catholic Primary School, we view the ‘outdoors’ as another classroom. Research highlights that well-constructed and well-planned outdoor learning spaces have positive physical and emotional benefits for children (Martin, 2011). 

Play spaces in natural environments not only invite;

  • open-ended interactions
  • spontaneity
  • risk-taking
  • exploration
  • discovery
  • connection with nature.

They foster an appreciation of the natural environment, develop environmental awareness and provide a platform for ongoing environmental education (DEEWR, 2009, P. 16).   Through the process of ‘trial and error’ the child learns about risky behaviour and therefore, can make assessments for the future, which fosters a heightened level of learning. 

“I like exploring and building with the sticks and woodchips” (Year 1)

“It allows us to be imaginative and play different games. We have more to do and helps keep us calm and happy!” (Year 5 girls)

“We love it!” (Year 4)