Inspiring exploration beyond the classroom

Embracing outdoor learning at BSB

At the British School of Brussels, we firmly believe that learning should extend beyond the confines of four walls. In line with this ethos, we have developed an innovative programme known as “Learning without Walls.” Unlike traditional classroom settings, where students are bound to desks and whiteboards, our outdoor learning initiative takes education to the great outdoors, offering a plethora of enriching experiences for our students.

Led by committed and dedicated teachers, our Learning without Walls sessions are designed to complement and enhance the curriculum. Additionally, these dedicated sessions provide students with unique opportunities to engage with nature, foster environmental stewardship, and cultivate a diverse set of skills.

Seamless integration into students’ learning journey

Throughout the academic year, students across different year groups participate in Learning without Walls sessions that align with Units of Discovery. This also allows for a seamless integration of outdoor experiences into their learning journey. Whether it’s constructing a shelter to explore the resourcefulness of early human adaptation, creating art inspired by nature while delving into scientific concepts, each activity is carefully crafted to intertwine academic knowledge with hands-on experiences in the natural world.

One of the key objectives of our outdoor learning program is to instil in students a deep appreciation for nature and the environment. By immersing themselves in outdoor settings, students develop a sense of connection to the natural world, fostering empathy and understanding towards ecological systems. Moreover, spending time outdoors has been shown to have numerous cognitive, emotional, and physical benefits for children, including improved concentration, creativity, and overall well-being.

Furthermore, outdoor learning provides a dynamic platform for students to develop a wide range of skills. Whether it’s teamwork, problem-solving, or critical thinking, the challenges presented in outdoor environments encourage students to adapt and innovate. By engaging in hands-on activities, such as building shelters or conducting experiments, students hone their practical skills while gaining a deeper understanding of theoretical concepts.

“There is a fundamental need in all of us to be outside,” says Esther O’Connor, Early Years Team Leader Primary. She points out that there is a strong link between wellbeing and spending time outdoors and, besides this, there is huge scope for children’s development outside the four walls of the classroom, both socially and academically.

“The idea about developing outdoor learning opportunities for all age groups was based on the need for a multipurpose area which would promote physical play and the development of gross motor skills,” said Esther O’Connor. “We have been thinking deeply about how to use the school’s outdoor spaces even more to enhance creativity, risk-taking, teamwork and independent learning.”

At BSB, we recognise the immense value of outdoor learning in nurturing well-rounded individuals equipped with the knowledge, skills, and empathy to navigate an ever-changing world. Through our Learning without Walls programme, we aim to inspire curiosity, foster resilience, and cultivate a lifelong love for learning—one outdoor adventure at a time. Join us as we embark on a journey of discovery, where the classroom knows no bounds, and the wonders of nature become our greatest teachers.

Read more about our Primary School activities at BSB.

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