Throughout my experience of #outdoorplay I have come across a few books which have been key to developing my practice and understanding. Some of them have been directed at the adult and others directed at the child. All of the following books have given me inspiration to try new things and to trust children more.
My first find was Playing Outdoors by Helen Tovey. This book was recommended to me through my University as essential reading for an assignment. As soon as I read the first chapter it was like a light bulb went on inside me. I was able to dip into it or read chapters in one sitting! It helped me to understand the real benefits of #outdoorplay. I was then able to go into my setting and see with my own eyes all the examples Tovey was describing. This book gave me the confidence I needed to discover what I was truly passionate about within early years.
Natural By Marc Pouyett gave me ideas and beautiful pictures to inspire the children when out in the forest or garden. This book is great if you like transient art which can be blown away by the wind and changed through nature. Some of my children enjoy simply looking at the pictures and then discussing how they could produce similar land art using natural resources.
We’re going on a bear hunt! By Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury. I love this story for children, it gives great visual ideas and is brilliant to act out in gardens! We did this a while ago with a large teddy bear hidden in trees. Some children still talk about the bear in the garden!
The Stick book by Jo Schofield and Fiona Danks. The Stick book is a wonderful collection of crafty ideas for those of us who love making things with sticks! I would say this book is an essential to anyone working outdoors with children.
Dirty Teaching by Juliet Robertson. Juliet has done a great job with this book. It starts with the very basics in getting children outside to learn in nature and then develops into how to care for nature and how to keep the learning going. This book is aimed at primary school teachers but I have found as an Early Years practitioner it is extremely helpful too.
I have found all of these books inspiring and engaging. Each one has helped me develop my love for outdoor learning and #outdoorplay! If you are just beginning to use outdoor space for learning I strongly suggest you buy these books, you will find they become invaluable to your professional development and confidence outside.
Hope you enjoy this blog post please feel free to leave a comment!