Did you know that simply looking at nature can reduce stress and boost focus in children? Plants make people happy — and yes, that statement is inclusive of children and adults. Taking activities like camp and birthday parties outdoors has countless benefits for children’s activity businesses and the children they teach.
Whether you’re looking to teach outside to safely return to in-person learning or are simply looking to shake up your classroom routine, discover why taking classes outside can be a game-changer for your business and students.
1. Experience is the best teacher
Think back to your childhood. What was your favorite part of school? Did you love field trips? What about recess? Did you enjoy when science experiments required being in the schoolyard? Often, changing routines and moving class outside can create memorable moments in education. Taking classes outside increases hands-on learning opportunities for students, as outside activities often require students to put the things they’re learning into practice.
For children’s activity providers, taking the classroom outside can empower students to take what they’re learning and apply it in a new setting. For example, teaching art outside can be a fun way to get inspired by nature while teaching sports outside can allow children to have more space to run, play, and move. Use our list of outdoor educational games to get some inspiration!
2. Fresh air and sunshine boost health
According to Sharon Danks, the CEO of Green Schoolyards America, “There’s also an intrinsic value to being outdoors: it’s good for students’ social, emotional, and mental well-being.” Think about your relationship with being outside. Do you go for afternoon walks to refresh and reset your brain? Do you enjoy relaxing in nature? Does sunshine boost your mood? These reflections aren’t unique to adults, and being outside is incredibly beneficial for little learners.
Being outside plays an important role in health and can help children develop in crucial ways. Now more than ever before, children are spending more time indoors for countless reasons including social distancing, increased screentime, and for many families, a lack of outdoor space to play and learn. Being outside helps children get a mood and vitamin boost from sunshine and as a result, Vitamin D. Being outdoors also encourages children to move more, think creatively, take risks, socialize safely, and appreciate nature! By taking your classes outside, you help children take advantage of being outdoors.
3. Outdoor classes often have lower overhead costs
If you run an in-person location or studio, you probably have many costs associated with your space. When you take classes outdoors, you don’t have to worry about electricity bills or the cost of a building rental. Although some outdoor spaces have a small cost associated with usage, they often aren’t bound by a long-term lease or similar financial commitment. By partnering with local public spaces, small businesses can teach classes in-person and reduce the costs associated with running a physical location. Outdoor classes can also allow businesses to expand their capacity — in so, allowing for more registrants and more revenue per activity.
4. Teaching outside is an alternative way to offer in-person activities
When navigating teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic, taking classes outside can provide a safe way to modify in-person classes for students. Open-air environments have a decreased risk of disease transmission. Embracing local public spaces like parks and schoolyards as venues for education can be encouraging for families who are nervous about going back to in-person classes. Additionally, it is easier for students to maintain social distancing when they’re free to learn outside. Businesses can trade worries about fresh air and ventilation in classrooms for reassurance that being outdoors reduces the likelihood of coronavirus transmission between students.
Teaching in-person classes outside during COVID-19 can also improve access to moments in out-of-school education enrichment. For families with limited access to childcare, in-person activities can help make time for parents to focus on other tasks while knowing their children are learning, growing, and playing. Outdoor classes are also wonderful for children who struggle with remote learning experiences and provide a dose of normalcy during a time where many students are learning from home rather than a traditional classroom.
Sawyer powers best-in-class educators across the United States and our team has software solutions to support online, outside, and indoor in-person learning. Reach out to a member of our team today to learn more about the benefits of teaching outside and how our software can streamline your business.