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Colourful and Enriching Outdoor Activities at WASCZ

School News January 08, 2024
Colourful and Enriching Outdoor Activities at WASCZ

In the memory of adults, scenes of childhood spent playing and chasing with friends outdoors often evoke a sense of joy. These delightful outdoor activities leave indelible imprints of happiness in the tapestry of childhood, serving as spiritual nourishment for the growth of young minds. Therefore, at Wycombe Abbey Kindergarten, we place great importance on organising and conducting a variety of outdoor games and activities.

At WASCZ we are blended with a wonderful outdoor environment on the banks of West Taihu Lake. The Kindergarden has its our garden (with flowers, plants, interactive resources and materials), forest (with tress, pathways and campsites), and farm (with animals and gardening plots) for all to enjoy.

Playing with sand, water, and mud provides sensory stimulation crucial for children's development. The process of playing with these materials allows children to engage actively in experiential learning. Through physical contact with various textures, their tactile development is satisfied. Playing with mud and sand involves actions such as digging, scooping, shoveling, stacking, building, and molding, promoting the enhancement of muscle tension and enriching neural connections. Practical play experiences enable children to understand the physical properties of water, mud, and sand, injecting a profound foundation for future knowledge-based learning about material and states of matter. Mud and sand, in their most primitive forms, serve as open-ended tools for developing children's imagination, creativity, and shaping abilities. One of the most interesting things for children must include playing freely with water, sand and mud.

Furthermore, the outdoor play facilities in the kindergarten garden, including large slides, climbing walls, and toy cars, and theses serve as essential media for children's learning and growth. These activities allow children to exercise and enhance their physical fitness, fostering teamwork and self-protective abilities through play. Slides, a common outdoor facility, help children develop balance and crawling abilities. Climbing walls enable them to improve muscle coordination and spatial perception. Riding toy cars provides immense joy and excitement, allowing children to pedal swiftly, experiencing the pleasure of speed and freedom whilst while training their motor and directional control skills.

The gardening area in the kindergarten is a vital space for children to connect with nature, fostering exploration, observation, and learning. Through gardening, children can experience the natural cycles and diverse growth of life, cultivating a sense of a respect for life and nature. Additionally, the proximity of the farming area to the planting area allows children to feed the pigs with the harvested vegetables, creating an ecological educational environment.

Apart from these, we opportunistically conduct various nature-based outdoor activities due to the rich vegetation and favourable climate. These activities include making dolls from grass, creating spring decorations and autumn baskets using natural materials like leaves, branches, and stones. During the process of searching for materials, the children often make unexpected and delightful discoveries, such as insect hotels, jumping grasshoppers, and dandelion seeds ready to travel. These are experiences that cannot be replicated within the confines of a classroom. We also had the rare opportunity to experience heavy snowfall in the southern region this year, bringing to life the snowball fights that were previously only seen in stories. Children played in the snow, chasing the falling snowflakes, capturing those joyful moments frozen in time.

The open design of our kindergarten's garden, forest and farm inspires natural tendencies of children – their energy, curiosity, and adventurous spirit. This approach effectively encourages and supports the freedom and interest of children in participating in activities, facilitating the release of energy, expression of temperament, and the unleashing of imagination. Additionally, our outdoor activities benefit from abundant natural resources and environmental advantages, providing children with favourable conditions and opportunities to intimately connect with and explore nature.