"One lesson outdoor is worth seven inside" Tim Brighouse

Educational Outdoor Learning Experiences

Educational trips at Acorn House are considered as a powerful and positive teaching tool that support learning acquisition and consolidation as well as social, personal and emotional development of our students.

Learning outside the classroom at Acorn House is an integral part of our dual curriculum, closely linked to our long term planning and classroom activities, ensuring the coherent and progressive development of knowledge, skills and understanding. Evidence shows that pupils' understanding and retaining of the knowledge improve if they are given the opportunity to spend quality time learning far from their class walls and paper works.
At Acorn House we are strongly convinced of the need for a broad and motivating curriculum offer and we are committed and confident about improving our learners' achievements, aspirations and personal development and we consider learning outside the classroom as key to our final objectives. Teachers value different opportunities for learning alongside the class lesson work and children are offered the possibility to explore the world outside their classrooms as integral part of our constructivist approach.
We believe that students can better achieve in Science, Art, History and Geography when learning is brought to life, making it more interesting and relevant to them.

Often we bring our Science and Art lessons outdoor as outdoor learning spaces are for these subjects often a comfortable and inspiring places to work. In our 15.000 mq. park or in the immediate neighborhoods teachers create occasions for children to actively get involved with investigative science or art challenges using the natural resources around them.

All groups of pupils/students from EYFS department to KS3 are regularly offered along the school year exciting and relevant daily trips closely linked to the learning occurring in class. Teachers accurately and carefully plan and present them to families at the start of every new school year.

At Acorn House we also give the possibility to children since an early age (year 2) to experience staying away from home for one night, increasing the number of nights they stay away as they get older, linking what they are learning on their books into real life.
Our staff before, during and after each trip carefully checks that our proposals are in line with health and safety regulation and at the conclusion of each experience evaluate the quality of learning outside the classroom, assessing its effectiveness in order to provide useful information to confirm or change future proposals.

Such hands-on learning experiences attentively planned and consistently evaluated and implemented contribute significantly to improve the following outcomes for pupils and students:

  • Improve personal, social and emotional development
  • Improve achievements and enjoyment for learning
  • Increase participation and motivation
  • Facilitate the extended conversations with students that are the best method of identifying the higher level earning and thinking that is taking, or has taken place
  • Improve behavior
  • Acquire greater confidence and leadership skills
  • Have an impact on children's learning for a long time afterwards
  • Provide an opportunity for students to be creative and to have personalised outcome which give them a sense of ownership of the learning process
  • Develop a trustful relationship with teachers
  • Give an opportunity to students and teachers to get to know and appreciate each other "hidden" skills and abilities

Outdoor well organised and inspiring experiences have been always part of our dual curriculum offer proving to contribute to the quality and depth of learning at Acorn House. We are therefore thankful to our teaching team who embrace the challenges and responsibilities of these offering and to our families that appreciate the work we do.

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"Learning outside the classroom is about raising achievements through an organised, powerful approach to learning in which direct experience is of prime importance. This is not only about what we learn but importantly how and where we learn." (Learning outside the classroom Manifesto, DCSF, November 2006)

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