Curriculum for Excellence through Outdoor Learning

Regular access to safe and stimulating outdoor learning provides an opportunity to deliver all aspects of the formal, informal and hidden curriculum in a way that meets the needs of children and young people for hands-on experiences and physical activity.

SAPOE has taught outdoor learning in the curriculum for many years and its members have worked closely with Education Scotland on guidance and learning outcomes.

The core values of Curriculum for Excellence echo the key concepts of outdoors learning:

  • challenge
  • enjoyment
  • relevance
  • depth
  • development of the whole person and an adventurous approach to learning

The advantages of taking learning outside are extensive and are often not always immediately obvious:

  • The opportunity to make mess, to explore and discover, and to make noise.
  • The fact that mentally and emotionally the outdoors is a very different place from the classroom.

Curriculum for Excellence offers opportunities for all children and young people to enjoy first-hand experience outdoors, whether within the school grounds, in urban greenspaces, in Scotland’s countryside or in wilder environments. Such experiences inspire passion, motivating our children and young people to become successful learners and to develop as healthy, confident, enterprising and responsible citizens.

Explore how your school or centre can deliver Curriculum for Excellence through outdoor learning:
(PDF files are available to download at the bottom of this page)

Curriculum for Excellence: Factfile - Outdoor Learning

Curriculum for Excellence through Outdoor Learning

More about what we do: Adventurous Activities »


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Going Out There

'Going Out There' is the Scottish framework for Safe Practice in Off-site Visits. It has been developed in partnership by the Scottish Government, the Scottish Advisory Panel for Outdoor Education, the Health and Safety Executive, Education Scotland and the Association of Directors of Education, with input from other partners, voluntary organisations and providers.

Click here to access ‘Going Out There’

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