Nature is an excellent teacher in itself, and by taking education outdoors we create an optimal learning environment.
No, we are not going to teach spear hunting. Instead we will take modern education outdoors, and we will bring digital tools with us.
In Norwegian, the term uteskole (/U:tesku:le) is a way of working, or a methodology, where content is presented to students using the nearby areas as a resource.
Outdoor learning is widely recognized as having a positive effect on learning outcomes. Learning outdoors is regarded as positive by bot young and older students. In addition, there are several studies showing that the learning outcome benefits the physical activity that often go hand in hand with spending time outdoors.
There are other benefits from outdoor learning, in addition to the additional exercise most of us sorely need. The NGO Norsk Friluftsliv, is referring to a study that shows that 9 out of 10 see lowered stress levels from spending time out in the nature.
These days, the benefit of having more space around us is an obvious plus. It is much easier maintaining social distancing with an abundance of space.
Both Norwegian schools and kindergartens have a strong tradition of facilitating outdoors activity. Most schools and kindergartens have large outdoors areas for play – not only playgrounds – large less landscaped areas. If they do not, they often go on excursions to such areas.
Outdoors activities promote good social relations, which are currently much needed.
There is a quite substantial initiative in Norwegian schools where subjects are intertwined in a holistic approach. “Fagfornyelsen” is a renewed strategy providing a more contextual framework for our educators. In this regard – use of outdoor learning – or the real world if you will – is a great fit.
– We are not only talking about nature and science, but outdoor learning is useful for creating varied learning experiences in all subjects, says Bjørn Christensen at Krapfoss elementary school.
Another key element in the “Fagfornyelsen” strategy, is the ability to demonstrate how the different subjects integrate.
– The world is not divided into subjects. We need to create context and show how society, history etc is interconnected, says Christensen.
Wittario shares the views on outdoors learning. In fact, the benefits of outdoors learning were the founding principles of the company.
However, we add gamification into the mix. Nature is an excellent teacher, but we believe that we will create an even better learning environment by combining outdoors activity, games and digital reference tools.
Wittario has been selected as one of ten technology companies that have been placed in Telia Startup – a program that mentors companies that use communication technology.
Wipe out the academic differences with digital games that teach, entertain, and engage your students. Encouraging physical activity is an important bonus!
Prestrud school in Hamar municipality, have tested Wittario on some of its students and the verdict is clear: THIS we are going to use much more in the future!