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About Wendy Banning
Wendy is both a long-time educator and a teacher trainer. She is a lover of the outdoors as well as a photographer; she incorporates photography into her documentation of children's learning and experiences.
Wendy is a developer and the director of Learning Outside (formerly Irvin Learning Farm, an inquiry-based, hands-on outdoor learning program. Learning Outside provides children, families and educators with experiences that support curiosity and wonder and that promote stewardship, a love of learning and a love of the outdoors. She also co-founded an independent school committed to serving the whole child and to 'community-building'.
Learn more about Wendy at www.learningoutside.org + www.facebook.com/LearningOutside
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The outdoors is full of rich learning experiences for preschool and pre-kindergarten children. Lens on Outdoor Learning is filled with stories and colorful photographs that illustrate how the outdoors supports children's early learning. Each story is connected to an early learning standard such as curiosity and initiative; engagement and persistence; imagination, invention, and creativity; reasoning and problem-solving; risk-taking, responsibility, and confidence; reflection, application, and interpretation; and flexibility and resilience. Much of the teaching in these experiences is indirect and involves provisioning, observing, and conversing with children as they spend quality time in nature. Children's dialogue and actions are included in each story to show just how engaged they became during these experiences. Lens on Outdoor Learning will inspire early childhood professionals to use this outdoor approach in their own setting.
Wendy Banning is coordinator of Irvin Learning Farm, an inquiry-based, hands-on outdoor learning space for children and adults in North Carolina. She is also an educational consultant, teacher, trainer, and photographer.
Ginny Sullivan is co-principal of Learning by the Yard, a partnership of landscape architects and educators that helps schools develop their grounds as habitat, focusing on native plants. Ginny consults, trains teachers, and involves schools and centers in the design of their outdoor spaces to help children learn about the natural world.