Learning outside together

This project aims to increase knowledge and skills among early care and learning professionals related to outdoor play and to the Indigenous practices and educational concepts of “land as teacher”. This approach incorporates learning with and from First Nations and Métis communities.

Future Skills Centre is investing $844,040 in this 2-year project. Learning outside together is a collaboration between Indigenous and non-Indigenous educators, knowledge keepers and organizations. It recognizes the value of incorporating traditional knowledge, experience and lessons learned from initiatives around the globe. Key activities include developing an online training and mentorship program, recruiting participants from across BC, implementing and evaluating the program.

Young children looking at snails outside.

The early care and learning (ECL) sector plays a vital role in economic recovery from the pandemic-induced recession and in the well-being of children and families. The pressing need for ECL providers to continue operating during the pandemic represents an emerging opportunity to embrace time outdoors, supporting the reduction of virus spread and benefiting child development.

This online professional development program will be accessible to all ECL workers in BC, including those in remote areas. To support those with limited internet access, printed educational materials will also be provided. The professional development program will benefit participants and mentors alike. Participants will have support in implementing their learning, increasing their organization’s internal capacity to develop supportive policies and enhance outdoor programming. This in turn will support young children to spend more time outdoors and enjoy “land as teacher” experiences.

Evaluation Strategy

This project will be evaluated using tools and approaches aligned with its goals, context, and stage of development. The evaluation will focus on generating the right evidence at the right moment to move the intervention forward. Read more about our evaluation strategy.

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