Outdoor literacy

Suitable for upper Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 

The children will be inspired by poetry about trees in Richmond Park and they will learn about veteran trees and the animals that live in them.  They will use their own senses to really think about emotive language as they explore the nature trail.

Which season is best for this activity?

This activity can be done all year round. The session is held outdoors; suitable clothing is required if rain is forecast. We only work indoors if the weather is exceptionally bad.

Learning objectives and links to the National Curriculum of Study.

The session links directly to the National Curriculum English Programmes of Study for Key Stage 1 and 2 (https://bit.ly/3Fikqfm)
All our sessions are underpinned by detailed lesson plans. These plans are adjusted to take account of the variations in ability and skill level across the Key Stages.

Children should be taught to:

  • Recognise simple recurring literary language in stories and poetry
  • Discuss and clarify the meanings of words, linking new meanings to known vocabulary
  • Discuss their favourite words and phrases
  • Listen to and discuss a wide range of poetry
  • Discuss words and phrases that capture the reader’s interest and imagination.

Outline of the activity

The focus of the lesson will be poetry and in particular poetry related to trees and nature.

  1. The children will listen to a poem about trees in Richmond Park and discuss the meaning/definition of the words. Children will then work in pairs to find natural objects that they think represent the word.
  2. Using natural materials they will create a paintbrush and use it to write other words inspired by the trees on the nature trail.
  3. They will learn about veteran trees and the creatures that live in them.

Ideas for pre-visit learning

Before bringing a group to do this activity, here are some ideas to help to introduce the subject:

  • Discuss types of poetry
  • Look at poetry inspired by the natural world

Ideas for follow-up work back at school

Children can take back photos of their treasure chest of words and use them to create more poetry or inspire other literacy projects.