Dawson Elementary Celebrates New Outdoor Pre-K Classroom
Members of the Huntsville City Schools Department of School Readiness, along with district and state education representatives and students were on hand to cut the ribbon on a new outdoor classroom for the Dawson Elementary Pre-K students. Helen Scott, the HCS School Readiness Director, thanked the district staff, community partners, and the State Department of Education for making this dream become a reality.
The classroom is designed to extend STREAM activities (Science, technology, engineering, math, art). The six different areas will help to develop curiosity that will provide the skills children need to solve problems.
Helen Scott said that in today’s world, many kids do not take the time to explore the wonders outside. Scott said that “having a space like this at school will help turn a child’s “wonder” into many teachable moments.” Classroom lessons that are taught inside are extended in the outdoor classroom to provide developmentally appropriate hands on discovery and learning.
Research supports that time spent playing in nature improves cognitive function and nurtures physical development and creativity. The areas created encourage outdoor art, science, engineering, gross motor, dramatic play, gardening, weather observation, bird watching, and much more as seasons change.