Outdoor Learning Ideas

Teacher Tips

As the weather gets warmer, it is only natural that we all want to get a little stir crazy. Our favorite way of fighting the spring fever is to find ways to make learning happen outside the classroom. Below we’re sharing our top outdoor learning ideas to give both you and your students some fresh air!

Weather Tools

We love teaching about the weather in Spring. It is the perfect time for students to make connections between what happens in nature. Plus they can observe the weather changing right in front of them! One topic our students always gravitate towards is weather tools. 

We start off with our Pocketbook Unit to give our students basic knowledge about weather tools and how they’re used. We make sure we collect plenty of reusable materials so that when we finish, we can have our students build their own rain gauges. It is a fun and engaging STEM activity but the best part is when we get to go outside and test them out! Your class can scout out the perfect place to place their rain gauges and have fun comparing their results after a rainy day.

Leaf Hunt

If you’re lucky enough to have trees and bushes around your school yard, this activity is for you! Leaves are a great tool to use when your students are learning about symmetry and patterns in math. They can see examples of patterns in nature and make real life connections. 

Have your students go around the school yard in small groups and collect leaves from each different type of plant they find. If you have tall trees, we suggest collecting leaves yourself and putting them in a paper bag or container underneath each tree. After they’ve collected leaves, we use them to make a leaf rubbing. All they need is paper and crayons so it is a low prep activity that they can also do outside if space allows.

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Five Senses Walk

Challenge your students to use all their senses with a Five Senses Walk. Give each student a clipboard and recording sheet to walk around the school yard and record what they see, hear, feel, smell, and taste.

Taste can be a tricky one and we don’t want our students trying to taste something they find on the ground. To fix this, we like to get some small shareable snacks like goldfish and apple slices and have the students find a peaceful place to taste them and record their observations.

Cloud Hunt

Did you used to love trying to find patterns in the clouds when you were little? We did too! When we started teaching about cloud types, we couldn’t resist taking our students out to recreate some childhood memories.

Make sure that you teach your students the different types of clouds. This Cloud Types Research Unit is the perfect place to start! Once they have a solid understanding, take them outside to look at the clouds. Make it fun and have the kids identify the types of clouds they see and see if they can find any clouds that look like something else.

The next time your class is getting restless, try one of these outdoor learning ideas to help reset. Did we miss your favorite outdoor learning activity? Let us know!

Are you looking for more Spring learning ideas? Check these out:

Spring Math Crafts

Indoor Recess Ideas to Keep Your Students Calm and Engaged


meet the teachers

Hi, we're Kelly and Stephanie, 2 teacher besties from Buffalo, NY. We love collaborating and creating hands on, engaging materials for all learners. Thanks for stopping by!

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