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Re-Imagining the Use of Outdoor Learning Environments in Secondary Education

Research output: Contribution in Book/Report/Proceedings - With ISBN/ISSNChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Publication date8/02/2024
Host publicationDesign and Covid-19: From Reaction to Resilience
EditorsRachel Cooper, Louise Mullagh
Number of pages238
ISBN (electronic)9781350266735
ISBN (print)9781350266728, 9781350266711
<mark>Original language</mark>English


This chapter reflects on the previous uses of Outdoor Learning Environments (OLE) and highlights its potential use to improve teaching and learning environments in secondary education. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the timeliness of further design research in this field and the value of OLE to promote health and wellbeing among staff and students.

The chapter is composed by 6 sections, the first section highlights the value of Outdoor Learning Environments, the second section presents the relationship between OLE and Pandemics and the third section analysis the experience during COVID-19 pandemic. The fourth section presents the current use of Outdoor Learning Environments in Secondary Education, the fifth section uses the Roman and Greek typologies of public outdoor learning environments as a possible inspiration for future OLE in secondary education. The sixth and last section closes the chapter and highlights how design research can inform the future of OLE in the fields of Policy, Educational Practice and Architectural Design and identifies possible ways of collaboration.

By bringing teachers, students, governors and community together in a participatory design research we would be able to envision the future of OLE. Design research has the potential to produce a series of visuals and reflections about the design and use of OLE. These would enable us to provoke and engage with a wider audience generate a discussion about the future of OLE and the potential of teaching ‘outside the box’.