This week’s outdoor ed focus was a really great experience. I was surprised by the completely different feel it gave to the lesson. Being outside was also really energizing, and I felt engaged with the UBC community. I also felt connected to the locale, seeing the ocean off in the distance, learning about the upside-down tree, and seeing other landmarks of UBC I hadn’t viewed yet. I imagine that students would also have this positive experience, were they to engage in PE class outdoors in their communities.
I appreciate how Outdoor Ed nicely connects to the Aboriginal Ways of Knowing by focusing on a sense of place. Being outside also supports the wellbeing of the self, the community and the land. Western education doesn’t often make enough space for children to be outside, which is so important to health. For example, getting vitamin D from being outside has important implications for serious health issues like depression and hormonal regulation. Being outside can connect us to the wider community, and knowing the outdoors fosters a sense of place. I am really excited to incorporate the outdoor element of PE into my future practice.