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More outdoor play for Scotland’s children and their families

More outdoor play for Scotland’s children and their families

Scottish play charities will share a ÂŁ550,000 funding boost to help get children and families out to play in their local communities. Creative outdoor play sessions, active play, and nature spaces for local communities are just some of the brilliant initiatives being supported by the Scottish Government Outdoor Community Play Fund aimed at improving the

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Mapping outdoor play in Scotland

Mapping outdoor play in Scotland

Thrive Outdoors is mapping the outdoor play sector in Scotland, aiming to find out where outdoor play is happening, how outdoor play organisations are run and the challenges these organisations face. Extensive research highlights the social, physical and emotional benefits of outdoor play for children and young people. But the Covid-19 pandemic has meant more

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New Outdoor Community Play Fund Open

New Outdoor Community Play Fund Open

The new Outdoor Community Play Fund was announced by Children’s Minister, Clare Haughey on Tuesday 12th April 2022.  This funding will support charities providing outdoor community play opportunities for children and families experiencing disadvantage, as defined by SIMD. Up to ÂŁ15,000 can be applied for by registered Scottish charities meeting the criteria. Funded by Scottish Government,

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Thrive Outdoors Blog Series: Case Studies- the children’s experience

Thrive Outdoors Blog Series: Case Studies- the children’s experience

  This month for the sixth instalment of our Botanics Blog series we hear from the two nurseries taking part in the pilot- Outdoor Nursery Edinburgh (ONE) and Edzell. Both nurseries share their own case study on a child’s experience of ‘The Wee Garden’. Hearing about the difference this outdoor space has made to each

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Thrive Outdoors Blog Series: Sharing learning from the Wee Garden

Thrive Outdoors Blog Series: Sharing learning from the Wee Garden

This month for the fifth instalment of our Botanics Blog series we hear from Caroline Walsh an Early Years Outdoor Learning Officer at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. Caroline shares her experience of the project so far and the key learnings along the way! I came into this exciting research project full of ideas. I had a vision

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Thrive Outdoors blog series: researching the magic of the Botanics’ Wee Garden

Thrive Outdoors blog series: researching the magic of the Botanics’ Wee Garden

This month for the fourth instalment of our Botanics Blog we spoke with Selvarani Selvaraja, a medical doctor from Malaysia, currently pursuing MSc Education (Early Childhood and Froebel) at The University of Edinburgh. Selvarani has been involved in this project as part of the research team, led by Dr. Lynn McNair, Head of Cowgate Under Fives Centre in Edinburgh, Scotland, and a Lecturer in

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Thrive Outdoors Blog Series: Nurseries experience so far

Thrive Outdoors Blog Series: Nurseries experience so far

This month for the third installment of our Botanics Blog we caught up with Edzell Nursery and Outdoor Nursery Edinburgh (ONE), the two nurseries involved in the project, to see how the experience has been so far. Edzell Nursery is based within a church hall at Goldenacre very close to the Botanic Gardens. Being based

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A day in the life of… Thrive Outdoors Fund Manager

Welcome to our first ever ‘Day in the Life Of’ feature, in which Thrive Outdoors Fund Manager, Melodie Crumlin, talks about her first six weeks with Inspiring Scotland What has a typical day looked like for you? The work itself has varied from day to day. Some days have been spent connecting with the wider

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Thrive Outdoors Blog Series: ‘Our wee garden’

Thrive Outdoors Blog Series: ‘Our wee garden’

  Blog 2 Read on as we share Blog 2 in our blog series on bringing Outdoor ELC to the Botanics in Edinburgh. This week’s blog contributor is Cath Ashby part of the learning team at the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh. Hi I am Cath Ashby and I have worked at the Botanics for 23

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Thrive Outdoors Blog Series: Bringing Outdoor ELC to the Botanics

Thrive Outdoors Blog Series: Bringing Outdoor ELC to the Botanics

Blog 1 This week sees the start of an exciting collaboration between the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (RBGE), Inspiring Scotland’s Thrive Outdoors team, the University of Edinburgh and two Edinburgh-based Early Learning and Childcare settings; Edzell Nursery and Outdoor Nursery Edinburgh (ONE). Over the next six months the partners will undertake research as groups of

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Scottish play charities receive funding to help local communities get outside to play

Scottish play charities receive funding to help local communities get outside to play

  25 Charities across Scotland will share ÂŁ500,000 of funding to develop and deliver more free outdoor play opportunities in local communities, aimed at improving children’s health and wellbeing. Creative outdoor play sessions, an outdoor playgroup for children and their dads, nature play spaces for local communities and gardening sessions are just some of the

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National Position Statement on Outdoor Play relaunched

National Position Statement on Outdoor Play relaunched

Outdoor activity plays a major role in supporting our health and wellbeing – something that has become increasingly clear over the past year. For children and young people, playing outdoors has an even greater impact – enhancing and supporting learning and development. Scotland has become the first part of the UK to directly incorporate Children’s

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Funding support for outdoor play and learning

Funding support for outdoor play and learning

  New ÂŁ1 million children’s winter clothing fund. New funding of ÂŁ1 million will mean more children can reap the benefits of outdoor play and learning, whatever the weather. Nurseries and other Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) settings can apply to the fund for help to buy winter clothing for young children who need it.

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The importance of engaging Scotland’s girls in Active Play

The importance of engaging Scotland’s girls in Active Play

To celebrate Scottish woman and girls in sport week 2020 we decided to interview Anne- Marie, who is involved in the running of the Active Play programme at voluntary organisation FARE Scotland, on the importance of engaging girls in Active play. FARE Scotland (Family Action in Rogerfield and Easterhouse) is a voluntary organisation working within

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COSLA the latest signature to Scotland’s National Position Statement on Outdoor Play

COSLA the latest signature to Scotland’s National Position Statement on Outdoor Play

Momentum continues to build in embedding play and learning outdoors as a fundamental part of growing up in Scotland. COSLA, the national association of Scottish councils is the latest major new signatory to sign the national statement which is a commitment to making play and learning outdoors an everyday activity for all children in Scotland.

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National position statement on outdoor play sees signatories double at 2 year anniversary

National position statement on outdoor play sees signatories double at 2 year anniversary

The national position statement on outdoor play and learning hits its 2 year anniversary this month – and the number of signatories signing up to this collective ambition has more than doubled. Two of the latest signatories, Scottish wildlife Trust and Clackmannanshire Council join over 100 organisations who recognise playing and learning outdoors as an

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Organised Outdoor Community Play Fund 2020 now open!

Organised Outdoor Community Play Fund 2020 now open!

Please note, this funding round (2020) is now closed, but you can find more information about the current fund here. Inspiring Scotland is seeking applications for the Organised Outdoor Community Play Fund, funded by the Scottish Government and set up to support children’s health and wellbeing through outdoor play.  The Scottish Government is providing £380,000

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Where should our future classrooms be?

Where should our future classrooms be?

In this collaborative blog, Rachel Cowper of Thrive Outdoors and Central Scotland Green Network Trust’s Deryck Irving present the case for moving classroom teaching outside post-COVID-19. The response to the current pandemic has meant the introduction of new behaviours to many aspects of our day-to-day lives. The process of easing lockdown will require changed behaviours

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Nurturing the ‘new normal’ through outdoor learning and play

Nurturing the ‘new normal’ through outdoor learning and play

As we move out of lockdown, embracing our outside spaces can help society recover and build resilience for the future, writes Thrive Outdoors Programme Manager Rachel Cowper. The online algorithms must be getting to know my reading habits of late, because I have come across many articles over the last few days discussing what the

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Abriachan opening marks outdoor nursery first for Thrive

Abriachan opening marks outdoor nursery first for Thrive

The first outdoor nursery directly supported by the Scottish Government and Inspiring Scotland through its Thrive Outdoors programme has opened at Abriachan Forest near Inverness. Joining local children and parents at the nursery’s first day was Minister for Children and Young People Maree Todd, who cut a bespoke ceremonial ribbon made from greenery. Also there

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Playing outside helps children to have a stake in their communities

Playing outside helps children to have a stake in their communities

By Jill Fraser, Community Play Performance Advisor Community is an old and deeply human idea. It is about sharing; people sharing experiences, sharing places and sharing hopes. We gain a sense of community early in our lives. For children, playing is intrinsically linked to a burgeoning sense of belonging to a bigger group of people

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Beyond play: community play charities are a vital support for struggling families

Beyond play: community play charities are a vital support for struggling families

By Jill Fraser, Community Play Performance Advisor Inspiring Scotland exists to address poverty and disadvantage. The role of Play Rangers, our community play programme, in this work isn’t self-evident. Yet giving children the opportunity to play outside, in their own neighbourhood, can reveal the damaging effects and true extent of child poverty in Scotland and

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We need our children to be better than us – outdoor play can help

We need our children to be better than us – outdoor play can help

There is a saying, variously attributed to early environmental campaigners but likely a much older proverb from a wiser time and place, that goes: “We do not inherit the earth from our parents, we borrow it from our children.” Whatever its origins, the sentiment rings true and by its maxim we have failed our children

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The Play Rangers are back: community play gets under way for summer 2019

The Play Rangers are back: community play gets under way for summer 2019

Thousands of children will be out playing in their communities across Scotland this summer after local charities received funding to run Play Rangers in their neighbourhood. 15 charities have received money to increase outdoor play opportunities through Inspiring Scotland’s Thrive Outdoors community play programme, which is funded by Scottish Government. Thrive Outdoors supports Scotland’s children

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Celia Tennant on the benefits of outdoor play for Holyrood Magazine

Celia Tennant on the benefits of outdoor play for Holyrood Magazine

Scotland is beautiful. We have mountains and rolling hills, forests, meadows, sandy beaches and rocky bays. Our cities, towns and villages are rich with urban beauty too. In fact, with their abundance of parks and gardens, they are the greenest in the UK. It is a beautiful place to call home and should be a

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TV presenter signs up to outdoor play pledge and Out to Play guide launched

TV presenter signs up to outdoor play pledge and Out to Play guide launched

Scottish wildlife filmmaker and television presenter Gordon Buchanan – best known for his close encounter with a curious polar bear on BBC’s The Polar Bear Family and Me – has added his name to a growing list of people and organisations committed to getting kids out to play. The raft of pledges will be announced

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Scotland commits to life-enhancing outdoor play

Scotland commits to life-enhancing outdoor play

50 people and organisations sign up to national pledge on outdoor play and learning Playing and learning outdoors will be a fundamental part of growing up in Scotland, following a national commitment from 50 people and organisations across the country. Alongside the Scottish Government and Inspiring Scotland, bodies as diverse as the Royal Zoological Society

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Work begins to expand outdoor nurseries in eight local authorities

Work begins to expand outdoor nurseries in eight local authorities

Inspiring Scotland’s Thrive Outdoors team has begun work with eight local authorities to encourage and support greater use of outdoor play and learning in the early years. Inspiring Scotland was awarded funding from Scottish Government earlier in 2018 to increase the delivery of outdoor play and learning opportunities as part of the expansion of the

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Care Inspectorate partners with Inspiring Scotland for outdoor nurseries guide

Care Inspectorate partners with Inspiring Scotland for outdoor nurseries guide

  Inspiring Scotland has partnered with Care Inspectorate to produce a How-to guide for establishing outdoor nurseries in Scotland. Karen Quinn and Donna Conroy from Care Inspectorate will work alongside Inspiring Scotland’s Thrive Outdoors team for the rest of the year and will support development of the guide, focusing on how to ensure safe, high-quality

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Go2play is now Thrive Outdoors

Go2play is now Thrive Outdoors

At Inspiring Scotland, we want all of Scotland’s children to thrive. We have been working in outdoor play since 2010 and we know that by playing outdoors, children grow, learn and develop, emotionally and physically, in the best possible way. In short, growing playing and learning outdoors is how children thrive. That’s why, after eight

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Inspiring Scotland’s new role in supporting greater use of outdoor learning in the early years

Inspiring Scotland’s new role in supporting greater use of outdoor learning in the early years

Minister for Childcare and Early Years, Maree Todd, has announced the number of hours nursery children spend outdoors is set to increase, and Inspiring Scotland will play a key role in  encouraging and supporting greater use of outdoor learning in the early years.  Ms Todd made the announcement during a visit to City of Edinburgh

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There is so much to play for when we encourage young children to enjoy the outdoors

By Juliet Robertson, Outdoor learning and play specialist, Creative STAR Learning The image of children splashing in muddy puddles or running, carefree through the woods, giggling in the way only happy children can, might seem like a nostalgic rural idyll to city dwellers in this age of social media and easy-access tech. But it doesn’t have

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Outdoor nurseries launched by Deputy First Minister in Castlemilk

Outdoor play and learning was given a boost when Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills, John Swinney officially launched the Welly Wanderers outdoor nursery in Glasgow’s Castlemilk woods on World Children’s Day, 20 November 2017. The Welly Wanderers is one of three outdoor nurseries being established in Glasgow under a partnership

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Inspiring Scotland supports Scottish Government’s Early Learning & Childcare Quality Action Plan

Inspiring Scotland supports Scottish Government in its commitment to improving the quality of Early Learning and Childcare through the publication of it’s Quality Action Plan. Through the work of the go2play fund, Inspiring Scotland has championed and encouraged play-based outdoor learning in Scotland’s communities, schools and natural spaces since 2010. We are pleased to see

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Away and Play: Fun, free and vital for development

Away and Play: Fun, free and vital for development

We have lost something by scheduling ‘fun’ as part of our busy lives.  Who remembers hopscotch?  Climbing into a cardboard box?  A stick that to you was a magic wand or a Light Sabre?  Who remembers just running through the woods or over the grass for no real reason at all?  I am sure most

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Health, education and natural heritage leaders back #AwayandPlay campaign

Leaders of Scottish bodies from health, education and natural heritage have backed the #AwayandPlay campaign highlighting the benefits of outdoor free play for young people and children. Senior figures including the Deputy Chief Medical officer and representatives from bodies such as Glasgow City Council, Historic Environment Scotland, Forestry Commission Scotland, Care Inspectorate, Scottish Natural Heritage

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Minister for Childcare and Early Years launches #AwayandPlay to help Scotland’s kids get the best start in life

Iconic Beano comic character, Dennis the Menace, joined Mark McDonald MSP, Scottish Government Minister for Childcare and Early Years, to launch a new campaign highlighting the benefits to children of free and creative play. The year-long campaign, “Away and Play”, is powered by Inspiring Scotland.  It will highlight the benefits of free and unstructured play

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Make outdoor play the norm for our children

Rachel Cowper from our go2play fund urges us all to let children play outside in The Herald.  With a sunny start to April and the longer days ahead, you might begin to see the streets and green spaces of Scotland filled with children and wonder: is it not always so? Sadly, like the rose-tinted memories

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