Heritage Council

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Learning in the Outdoors: Commissioned Reports by Natural England (2011)

Natural England is a Public Body responsible to the Secretary of State for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs in the UK. Their purpose is to protect and improve England’s natural environment and encourage people to enjoy and get involved in their surroundings. Natural England publishes a wide range of publications as well as making available the research that supports its evidence base.

The UK's Natural Environment White Paper - The Natural Choice: Securing the Value of Nature (Dept. for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs 2011) sets out the need to strengthen the connection between people and nature, and gives an explicit call for every child in England to be given the opportunity to experience and learn about the natural environment. To help achieve this ambition, the UK Government sets out several key reforms which include a commitment to removing challenges and increasing teachers' and schools' abilities to teach outdoors. It is within this context that Natural England undertook the following three pieces of research which explore different aspects relating to outdoor education.

View Learning in the Natural Environment: Review of Social & Economic Benefits & Barriers [pdf ]614kb.

View School Leader & Teacher Insights into Learning Outside the Classroom in Natural Environments [pdf 900kb].

View Developing sustainable Volunteering within the Natural Connections Demonstration Project: A Review of Evidence [pdf 413kb].