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BushKinder 

Starting in 2024 Meeniyan Preschool will embark on the glorious world of Bush Kinder adventures utilising the amazing environment in Meeniyan and surrounding areas. 

In-nature programs can take place in a variety of natural environments, such as at your local park/reserve, at the beach, a lake, or in the bush. Each place will offer unique learning experiences for children and can also pose its own planning challenges and considerations.

Benefits from playing in a Nature

Research shows that spending time in natural environments has a range of benefits for children. Dr Sue Elliot has identified the following positive outcomes for children participating in a bush kinder program.

 

  • Physical activity – children take part in more physical activity outdoors during in-nature programs and in all weather. This is an important outcome for children as more and more children and families have limited access to natural environments at home.
     

  • Nature dispositions – many parents reported that their child had a greater interest in nature and positive attitudes to natural elements.
     

  • Social skills – educators and teachers observed more collaborative play and children relating to others with understanding, respect and supportiveness.
     

  • Respect and equity – educators and teachers observed less gender stereotyped play at bush kinder than at the service premises, and when siblings visited bush kinder they integrated easily into the play scenarios; all children were welcomed to play
     

  • Curiosity – Bush kinder aligns with the approved learning frameworks outcome that ‘children develop dispositions for learning such as curiosity, creativity, commitment, enthusiasm, persistence, imagination and reflectivity’.
     

  • Reflection skills – Children changed the way they interacted with the environment and spent periods of time sitting, reflecting and participating in philosophical discussions with peers, educators and teachers.
     

  • Creativity – Parents described that at home, children became less dependent on manufactured toys, and instead collected rocks, twigs and other natural materials for innovative and creative play (Chancellor and Elliot, 2014).

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Further Information

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