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June 3, 2015

Outdoor Learning Professional Development Series Off to a Great Start!

Outdoor Learning Professional Development Series Off to a Great Start!
This past Friday and Saturday, Tír na nÓg Forest School, in partnership with Recreation New Brunswick’s NB PLAYS! and Forest School Canada, hosted the first in a series of Outdoor Learning Professional Development workshops.

Over 75 early childcare experts, educators, healthcare professionals, learning specialists, Forest School practitioners, recreation directors and after school leaders from across the Maritimes were in attendance. Representatives from Child and Nature Alliance of Canada, the Department of Education and Education and Early Childhood Development, Holland College, the Department of Health, Riverview Parks and Recreation, Talk With Me, 4-H Club and Recreation New Brunswick all took log-seats around the campfire at Tír na nÓg’s woodsy base camp. All were there to learn about how they can forward their visions of fostering healthy, happy living for children and youth through rich outdoor play and learning experiences.

Facilitated by Forest School Canada’s outdoor learning experts, Marlene Power and Mavis Lewis-Webber, the two-day event introduced participants to Forest School philosophy and how it can be put into practice in a variety of New Brunswick learning settings. Participants explored how natural spaces and natural, found materials can be used to support valuable opportunities for play-based learning and an emergent curriculum.

The workshop also provided the NB PLAYS! team a chance to gather some information about what out-of-school programs are offering in terms of outdoor activity, as well as what they would need to enhance this area of programming. We were also fortunate enough to connect with several like-minded individuals and organizations, and share copies of The PLAYBOOK.

Everyone left the workshop feeling inspired and armed with the knowledge to provide positive outdoor learning experiences for the children and youth they work with.

Check out some photos from the workshop here:

The next workshop in this Outdoor Learning Professional Development Series will take place on October 17th. Anyone interested in this training opportunity can contact NB PLAYS! Coordinator, Michelle DeCourcey at or by calling (506) 459-1929 Ext. 5 for more information.

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