1.1 Definition of the area
The wild area is an unstructured environment, not facilitated by adults. It contains varied terrains and altitude conditions with hills and slopes, logs and stones, puddles. It also contains varied vegetation conditions with a mix of tall trees, low bushes, tall grass, low grass, plants, and flowers. With the help of plants, biotopes can be formed in the outdoor environment showing biological links, the vegetation increases the biodiversity of the environment which promotes wildlife. Bug hotels and bird houses can also be incorporated. The area gives opportunities to follow the seasonal changes of the seasons.
The surface can be used for social interaction, play and imagination, the development of health, motor and skills, training and all-round movement, language development, mathematical concepts, science and technology, animal and plant exploration. The child can experiment with his/her own limits, test him/herself, acquire awareness about his/her own body and its potential, develop the his/her thoughts, balance skills and memory of his/her own actions, but, above all, enhance the sense of freedom.
This zone may be suitable for both controlled as well as more unrestrained teaching /activity, following season changes. This environment needs to be made accessible to all children, including those with physical challenges.
1.2 Learning Objectives
Children to reflect on experiences, knowledge acquisition and social interactions. The unstructured environment increases the children's imagination and free thinking.
Discover and explore nature in its various seasons. The children are given the opportunity to use all their senses to discover their surroundings.
- CONNECTION WITH NATURE:
Experience nature with all their senses. To feel part of nature and develop re-sponsibility towards it. To achieve well-being, inner peace and freedom.
- DECONSTRUCTION AND RECONSTRUCTION OF CHILDREN’S IMAGINATION:
To encourage various forms of play, role play and teaching. The environment strengthens children's imagination and creativity and desire to explore both their senses and the environment.
To discover, investigate and learn about nature. What children see and expe-rience in the wild area can be used for a teaching purpose, to find out more facts and knowledge.
The children to be encouraged to ask questions and find the data to answer the question(s) themselves through guidance from their teacher. The envi-ronment and responsive teachers can increase children's curiosity to learn more about nature and the environment.
1.3 Curriculum References
Content: Learning takes place through action, exploration, contact with objects, nature, art, the territory, in a playful dimension, to be understood as a typical form of relationship and knowledge ... In the educational relationship , the teachers perform a function of mediation and facilitation and, in making the search for children their own, help them think and reflect better, urging them to observe, describe, narrate, make hypotheses, give and ask for explanations in cooperative and confrontational contexts widespread.
Area of development: personal and social awareness p. 39 - 41
Keystone 1: independence and self-confidence - Aim: Children to develop confidence in their abilities (willingness to explore new and different environments)
Keystone 2: Social Development - Aim: Children to collaborate with other children in different contexts (exploration of materials and space with other children)
Area of development: Personal care and safety p.58
Keystone 1: Motoric skills - Aim: Children to meet the consequences of reckless and dangerous behaviours
Area of development: Mental empowerment p.59-68
Keystone 1: Conceptual understanding - Aim: Children to interact with the environment and collect information
Keystone 2: Critical thinking - Aim: The children to make choices based on the evaluation of information/data
Personal and social awareness - Keystone 1: p. 39.
The child to reflect on his/her actions and explore the world using all of his/her senses, while trying to use new things. In this page, suggestions are provided with regards to activities, such as:
- Reflection activity on assignment
- Development of a personal folder to monitor learning and development based on the drawings/texts that the child chooses to demonstrate
- Provision of opportunities for exploration and discovery through free and structured play
- Encouragement to use new material in free and structured play (e.g. scissors)
Personal and social awareness - Keystone 2: p.41.
This page refers to the attitude towards learning and developing a positive stance towards something new. Some indicative practices are the following:
- The creation of etiquettes with each child's photo, so that he/she recognises their own hanger
- Encouragement of independent use of toilet
- Construction games (e.g. building a tower)
Personal care and safety: p. 58.
Some indicative practices are the following:
- Personal stories on accidents
- Game of "What if..." (e.g. I would cross the road without looking out for the cars?)
- Observations and recording of external characteristics of children's bodies
- Creation of daily schedules and routine schedules and then to identify those that are related to wellbeing
- Description of the way the children feel and behave when there is a lack of sleep or exercise
Mental empowerment - Keystone 1: p. 59
The key recommended practices offered are the following:
- The provision of exploring opportunities of specific subjects (e.g. musical instruments, balls etc.), the creation of a collection (e.g. leaves collection that we gather from the school yard)
- The children to tidy up cooking utensils in baskets, to tidy up furniture of the doll house etc.
- Creation of a spatial diagram or illustration (younger children) or a histogram (older children) based on the selection of specific objects or situations (e.g. fruit or toy I like)
Mental empowerment - Keystone 2: p. 68.
The indicative learning objectives mentioned are the following:
- The child to compare information, form an opinion and comment on situation
- The child to organise and express his/her thoughts
- The child to explain and support his/her decisions
- The child to make decisions based on data.
Some indicative practices are the following:
- The child notices other child/children in a difficult situation (e.g. a child crying) and gives him/her/them a toy
- Give children options of games or activities to engage in.
- Trial and error: put pieces in place.
Keystone 2: p.1 - Main goal
Keystone 10.4, p. 3 - Learning fields
Keystone 9.4, p. 2 - Transversal skills. Cooperation
Content: The curriculum for preschool education aims to be a curious, creative and cheerful child who lives healthy, safe and active, self-paced, engaged and fun learning experiences through self, others, the world around and interaction with one another.
Reference:p. 13 to p. 17.
The preschool should provide each child with the conditions to develop:
- openness, respect, solidarity, and responsibility.
- the ability to consider and empathise with the situation of other people, as well as a willingness to help others.
- the ability to discover, reflect on and work out their position on different ethical dilemmas and fundamental questions of life in daily reality.
- respect and understanding of the equal value of all people and human rights.
- a growing responsibility for and interest in sustainable development and active participation in society.
- their identity and feel security in it, and awareness of the right to physical and personal integrity.
- independence and trust in their own ability.
- curiosity, creativity, and desire to play and learn,
- an ability to function individually and in a group, corporate, manage conflicts and understand rights and obligations, and to assume responsibility for common rules
- an ability to listen to and reflect on other people's perceptions, and to reflect and express their own beliefs.
- fantasy and imagination.
- motor skills, coordination, and body perception, and understanding how important caring for their health and well-being.
- an understanding of relationships in nature and different cycles in nature, and how
- people, nature, and society affect each other,
- an understanding of how different choices people make in everyday life can contribute to sustainable development.
- an understanding of natural sciences, knowledge of plants and animals, and simple chemical process and physical phenomena.
- an ability to explore, describe with different forms of expression, ask questions, and discuss science and technology.
- an ability to discover and explore technology in everyday life.
- an ability to build, create and construct with the help of different techniques, materials, and tools
- an interest in and an ability to express thoughts and opinions so that they can influence their situation.
- an ability to assume responsibility or his own actions and for the environment in preschool.
- an understanding of democratic principles and the ability to cooperate and make decisions in accordance with them.