WHY FOCUS ON PHYSICAL ENVIRONMENT?

The physical design of a learning environment is crucial. It is the first encounter with the learning environment upon arrival as well as what children play in, work in, feel in, and breathe in throughout the day. The learning environment includes both the indoor and outdoor spaces and the physical design for successful daily routines.  We understand that environments influence how people feel, act and work in a space. Think about how you feel when you enter a space that is brightly colored or disorganized versus something clean and neutrally colored. We view our program as an extension of home where your children can feel comfortable and know that they belong; a living, changing system based on the needs and interests of those in the space.  In particular, we place an emphasis on children’s ability to have freedom of movement while they play.  We consider movement when we design our spaces and provide children with access to materials, opportunities to wonder, revisit their work while inspiring the adults to do research based on their observations of the children in their care.   

 

For further reading:

Consider the Walls

Children and Place

Making your Environment the Third Teacher - Margie Carter

The Natural Environment as a Playground for Children

Use the Environment To Prevent Discipline Problems and Support Learning

Applying Brain Research To Create Developmentally Appropriate Learning Environments.

The Real Benefits of Nature Play Everyday

Aesthetics in the Classroom Setting

Designs for Living and Learning

NAEYC Print and Online Resources on Environments that Support Exploring, Learning and Living

Written by Allison Horne