Outdoor Environmental Play and Learning
Dimson is situated on a ten acre smallholding comprising a purpose built barn conversion, gardens, fields and forest (an acre of cultivated securely fenced woodland) situated in the beautiful Tamar Valley.
The children have access to and look after small and large domestic animals including Guinea pigs, chickens, ducks, pigs, sheep and ponies.
Recent Awards Achieved:
- Ofsted (2008) Learning Environment –
- Nursery World (2008) Nursery of the Year –
- Nursery Management Today (2008) -
Best Learning Environment Award
Life Time Achievement Award for our Principal.
We believe children should be given every opportunity to develop their potential at their own pace in a varied and stimulating environment where their learning is play based. To do this we offer a mix of outdoor and indoor environments aimed at encouraging all aspects of development using the Department for Education and Skills Foundation Stage Curriculum as a base line.
We consider outdoor environmental play and learning to be a vital element of our programme. Being outside:
- Allows children their own space in which they have the freedom to explore and become ‘little scientists’
- is non threatening
- promotes exercise and health
- connects them to nature and the natural environment encouraging awareness and empathy
- teaches them how to assess and handle risk, building self esteem, independence and confidence
Richard Louv (2006) coined the phase ‘Nature-deficit disorder’ to describe children, who because of our risk adverse Society, do not experience nature and the natural environment. He states the human cost of alienation from nature contributes to maladjusted behaviours, higher urban crime rates and child depression.
Through the environment and curriculum we have developed, acknowledge the importance of this research not only to children but also to Society.