St. Andrews Green Valley offer transformative outdoor learning experience for students

Image via St. Andrews International School, Green Valley

At St. Andrews International School, Green Valley, lessons take place outside as much as they do outside. The school embraces outdoor learning into their curriculum, as well as offering outdoor activities like Forest School, School Trips, and the Duke of Edinburgh Programme.

This innovative approach provides various benefits for their students. According to research, incorporating nature into education improves academic performance, communication skills, brain development, and mental well-being. It also promotes physical activity and motor development in young children.

Here’s how St. Andrews International School, Green Valley, integrates outdoor learning into its curriculum.

Outdoor education within Green Valley’s curriculum

Outdoor learning at St. Andrews International School, Green Valley
Image via St. Andrews International School, Green Valley

St. Andrews International School, Green Valley, offers an academically rigorous education with a strong focus on outdoor learning. Its location on the outskirts of Pattaya and Rayong, as well as its expansive green campus, provides students with exceptional opportunities for hands-on exploration, discovery, and personal growth in the great outdoors.

The school believes that incorporating the campus’ outdoor space into the curriculum allows students to apply their learning in real-life scenarios. It can also enhance skills like risk-taking, inquiring, reflecting, and communicating as per the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum. In addition, this integration helps develop ecoliterate students, which is one of the school’s educational philosophies.

In both Primary and Secondary levels, subjects are carefully designed to incorporate outdoor education into lessons as a way to supplement classroom learning.

Outdoor learning at St. Andrews International School, Green Valley
Image via St. Andrews International School, Green Valley

For example, students may measure the size of leaves and trees during a Maths lesson. Or, they may build a wind turbine as part of the study of renewable energy. Or, they may learn the meanings of English terminologies and phrases like ‘between a rock and a hard place’ through, well, rock climbing. They may even go horseback riding and paddleboarding during PE lessons.

“Outdoor education is essential to children’s learning. Students get the opportunity to develop both personally and as part of a team when they’re in an outdoor context,” says Jo Clark, the Outdoor Activities Lead across all four St. Andrews International Schools in Rayong and Bangkok.

Jo brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to St. Andrews International School, Green Valley’s outdoor learning initiatives. She found love for nature in her 20s when she went to South America to do week-long solo hikes in the mountains. Last year, she climbed the Gasherbrum II in Pakistan, which is the 13th-highest peak in the world.

Inspired by her own experiences, Jo now advocates for environmental appreciation through outdoor learning. At the school, she ensures that all students from nursery to Year 13 have access to outdoor education opportunities. According to her, students can learn valuable lessons about both the environment and themselves in an outdoor setting.

With Jo’s guidance, St. Andrews International School, Green Valley, has effectively integrated outdoor learning principles into everyday classroom activities.

Forest school, school trips, and the Duke of Edinburgh Award Programme as part of Green Valley’s outdoor learning initiatives

Young girls dancing at St. Andrews International School, Green Valley
Image via St. Andrews International School, Green Valley

Apart from integrating outdoor learning into its core curriculum, St. Andrews International School, Green Valley also provides a Forest School, school trips, and the Duke of Edinburgh Award Programme for their students.

Developing outdoor skills and knowledge at the Forest School

St. Andrews Green Valley offer transformative outdoor learning experience for students | News by Thaiger
Image via St. Andrews International School, Green Valley

Located within St. Andrews International School, Green Valley’s campus grounds, the Forest School gives students a hands-on outdoor learning experience. The activities are as fun and as varied as the great outdoors itself, immersing students in the world that exists beyond the classroom and that is so often missed in today’s busy life.

From identifying local flora and fauna to building a den, lighting a fire, building a camp, and cooking meals, the Forest School encourages students to develop a deep appreciation for the environment and take action towards sustainability and conservative efforts. It offers plenty of opportunities for students to explore new interests outside of conventional academic pursuits, too.

Furthermore, students can learn resilience and confidence through the Forest School since they have the space to try new things without fear of failure. They may even develop their emotional intelligence by building empathy, teamwork, self-awareness, and social skills. And, of course, the Forest School also improves students’ physical abilities. It engages students in activities that enhance strength, balance, coordination, and motor skills.

School trips to help students step out of their comfort zone

Students kayaking as part of St. Andrews International School, Green Valley's outdoor learning initiatives
Image via St. Andrews International School, Green Valley

For St. Andrews International School, Green Valley, school trips are as valuable to learning as all other areas of the curriculum. Therefore, their students enjoy multiple trips throughout the school year.

From trips to the beach and watersports adventure to geography visits to Koh Chang and hiking and camping in Khao Yai National Trips, school trips are fun and give students lasting memories with their friends. But most importantly, these trips push them out of their comfort zones and challenge them to try new things. It helps them see how expansive the world is. As a result, these trips might motivate them to explore what’s available for them out there.

Additionally, these trips provide a platform for Green Valley’s students to enhance their leadership and collaboration skills while disconnecting from technology and immersing themselves in nature.

Duke of Edinburgh Award Programme

Male students setting up camp at St. Andrews International School, Green Valley's outdoor learning
Image via St. Andrews International School, Green Valley

St. Andrews International School, Green Valley, is officially licensed by the Duke of Edinburgh’s (DofE) International Award as an Independent Award Centre. With this accreditation, students from Year 10 and beyond have more opportunities for personal development, skill-building, and community engagement through outdoor activities and experiential learning.

The DofE is inclusive and non-competitive. In order to earn the certification, students have to engage in various activities across four main categories. These include volunteering, physical recreation, skills development, and adventurous journeys. Therefore, students who participate can learn about setting personal goals, pushing boundaries, and making a difference in their communities. It may help them discover their passions as well. And as a bonus, they will receive recognition for their accomplishments.

Outdoor learning at St. Andrews International School, Green Valley
Image via St. Andrews International School, Green Valley

The outdoor learning experience at St. Andrews International School, Green Valley is a prelude to realising their educational philosophy of ecoliteracy, personalised learning, and holistic education. It helps students acquire a range of personal values, skills, and qualifications needed to lead adventurous, brilliant, and happy lives in the future, which is encapsulated in the school’s motto: “Be Adventurous, Be Brilliant, Be Happy.

For more information about their outdoor learning initiatives, visit St. Andrews International School, Green Valley’s website or follow them on Facebook.

Sponsored

Early YearsFeatured SchoolsInternational Education

Cita Catellya

Cita Catellya is a journalist and writer who covers a range of topics from medical and property to leisure and tourism. Her career began as a copywriter 5 years ago, where she worked with several brands in Indonesia to help them increase their online presence. Cita writes in both English and her native Bahasa Indonesia

Related Articles

Check Also
Close