Free outdoor learning sessions in the Yorkshire Dales offered to local schools

Swaledale. Photo: Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority.

Schools whose catchment includes part of the Yorkshire Dales National Park are being offered a free full or half day of curriculum-based learning in the great outdoors this summer term.

Teachers are invited to contact the national park authority’s learning and engagement team to arrange a Learn, Love, Explore experience.

Subjects could include geography and science fieldwork, farm visits, creative arts sessions, interpretive walks, or outdoor survival skills such as navigation and bushcraft.

Staff from the national park authority’s ranger and wildlife teams, as well as Dales volunteers, will be brought in to work on the programme, led by the authority’s education Officer, Rebecca Swift.

Schools can make contact by emailing or calling 01756 751628.

Funds will be made available to schools to contribute to transport costs.

Member champion for promoting understanding, Kevin Frea, said: “There are 60 primary, secondary or special schools whose catchment includes part of the national park and I really hope teachers at these schools will consider getting in touch with us.

“We would really like to help them get their pupils outside and learning about the natural environment.

“We have been busy preparing resources for outdoor classes and are ready to offer a variety of learning opportunities.

“Although we haven’t been able to offer this sort of service for some years, we’ve gained plenty of experience of working with young people through events such as the Dark Skies Festival and the Young Ranger groups – so teachers can be assured that their pupils will receive a high quality learning experience.”

The national park authority has begun to produce an e-newsletter, once per term, for teachers.

The newsletter includes information about opportunities for schools to get out in the national park with the authority’s education team and other organisations.

It also provides information about teacher networking sessions and details of new and exciting projects to increase young people’s nature connectedness.