Spray art

Spray Bottle Nature Prints

Posted by: Rhonda July 18, 2017

The shapes and materials of nature can inspire many art activities. This is one of the best that I’ve come across—simple, beautiful, and lots of fun for kids because it involves spray bottles! You’ll certainly want to try this one in your Outdoor Classroom this summer.

Click here for instructions.

Return of play

Return of Play

Posted by: Rhonda July 11, 2017

“I felt like a birdwatcher that had spotted a rare species,” relates Joan Almon after recently observing some young boys playing outdoors on a small street in Baltimore. “Most astonishing was that there were no adults visible.”

After decades of steady decline, it’s hard to believe that play is experiencing a resurgence. But Almon, a nationally known advocate for childhood, reports that “play is on the rise again.”

What is fueling this revival? Find out here.


mud kitchen

Making a Mud Kitchen

Posted by: Rhonda June 27, 2017

What do children do with mud? The simplest way to find out is to get some dirt, add water, and let the kids loose! It might seem like pushing the boundaries, but you won’t be alone. This week children all over the world will be participating in International Mud Day, celebrating one of nature’s most fantastic play materials: mud!

But if it’s so fun, why should mud play be relegated to just one day a year? In her article, Making a Mud Kitchen, Mary Rivkin offers a year-round solution to a child’s craving for mud. With little more than some old pots and pans, stirring spoons, and—most importantly—some dirt and water, you will be amazed at the fantastic culinary concoctions your kids will create. And sure, there might be a glorious mess, but nothing that a hose can’t easily take care of!

Ready to try it? Read the article here.

Family Play1

The Importance of Family Play

Posted by: Rhonda June 20, 2017

Remember those long summer holidays of your childhood spent outside with friends, siblings, bikes, and balls? Staying out until it got too dark to see? Sadly, due to the changing norms in our society, these memories may likely disappear with our generation. It has become rare to see children playing freely out-of-doors.

However, as time for play becomes increasingly endangered in schools, it is more important than ever that children have opportunities for play at home. To help support this, our colleagues at TRUCE (Teachers Resisting Unhealthy Children’s Entertainment), created a set of Family Play Plans to give parents simple, inexpensive ideas for rich, creative, and sustainable family play. View them here, then share them with the families in your program.

Outlast Tables

How do you use your outdoor tables?

Posted by: Rhonda June 13, 2017

What would summer be without picnics? But that's not the only thing you can do with an outdoor table!

Don’t overlook the other bonus features of your outdoor furniture. See how this center gets the ultimate mileage out of their Outlast Tables. Watch now. (3-minute video)