Outdoor Learning & STEM

Our STEM Commitment

STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) present a unique opportunity to cultivate curiosity, self-direction, problem solving and much more through play in the early years. As part of our commitment to reignite curiosity in our children we are striving to serve our network in 2020 with a strong focus on STEM.

Outdoor Learning Resources

We are committed to helping educators in our network access and support outdoor learning opportunities for students of all ages. Need help? See below for our tool kit!

STEM in Early Learning

There are so many opportunities to ignite the natural curiosity of our kids. We are committed to helping our network develop STEM Lab experiences for young children and facilitate research on the use of STEM Labs as an opportunity for higher order thinking and developmentally appropriate practices that help all kids see the value in wondering.


  • Read Jody’s latest on Outdoor Classrooms and the benefits of Outdoor Learning [Read more here
  • Teacher–child conversations in preschool classrooms: Contributions to children’s vocabulary development. Findings indicated that professional development increased teacher–child engagement in multi-turn conversations, child-initiated conversations, and teachers’ strategy use. In addition, teacher–child conversations with a high concentration of teacher elicitations and extensions were positively associated with children’s vocabulary gains. [Read more here]
  • The Power of Play: Research demonstrates that developmentally appropriate play with parents and peers is a singular opportunity to promote the social-emotional, cognitive, language, and self-regulation skills that build executive function and a prosocial brain. Furthermore, play supports the formation of the safe, stable, and nurturing relationships with all caregivers that children need to thrive. [Read more here]
  • Dramatic differences in tests assessing preschoolers’ language skills: Preschool is a crucial time for language development. Children born preterm who display deficits in language skills are unlikely to catch up with their full-term peers. That’s why it’s imperative to accurately assess their language skills to determine if they need early intervention. [Read more here]

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