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“It’s safer outdoors than in indoors.”

Dr. Mark Tremblay of Canada’s HALO Research talks to Prof. John Reilly of the University of Strathclyde and Rachel Cowper of Inspiring Scotland about how, counter to to popular belief, it is safer for children to be outdoors than indoors. This video is part of a series on the health crisis faced by young children

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“Physical activity levels are far too low” – children’s health & well-being in Canada & Scotland

Dr. Mark Tremblay of HALO Research and Prof. John Reilly of the University of Strathclyde discuss childhood inactivity levels in Canada and Scotland from the Active Healthy Kids Report Card 2016 – one of the reasons we strive for physically active outdoor play for all of Scotland’s children.

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Top 20 tips of 2020

A Practitioner’s Guide: Top 20 tips of 2020

  It was amazing to see how outdoor play and learning was fully embraced this year in spite of all the challenges. We all realised just how important the outdoors is- not just for our children but for the WHOLE family. As we face yet more restrictions at the start of the new year –

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Childminder Takeover 1

A Practitioner’s Guide: Childminder Takeover 1

  Are you a childminder looking to do more outdoor play but aren’t sure where to start? Childminder extraordinaire Emma Smith is this week’s guest blogger, revealing her secrets to embracing and enjoying every opportunity to get outside. It’s a childminder takeover!  

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Creativity in the outdoors

A Practitioner’s Guide: Creativity in the outdoors

  Time to embrace getting creative outdoors! This week’s guest blog is from Matt Searles -Head of Learning at Jupiter Artland. In this blog he shares his thoughts on taking a creative approach to outdoor learning and more on learning creativity in the outdoors.      

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Experiences

A Practitioner’s Guide: Experiences

  The third of a series exploring the Play Pedagogy shared principles;  interactions, spaces and experiences. We know that learning experiences provided in the earliest months and years in a child’s life are critical for their future success in life – here are a few key experiences that can make a big impact on the development

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Flexi-schooling Fun

A Practitioner’s Guide: Flexi-schooling Fun

  Are you a parent or carer interested in learning more about flexi-schooling and how it can offer up the opportunity to experience outdoor play and learning…then our latest blog is for you! This week’s guest blogger is Gemma Craigie-Sharland, Performance and Impact advisor here at Inspiring Scotland featuring her daughter.Gemma shares more on what

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Getting Started

A Practitioner’s Guide: Getting Started

  Are you a nursery looking to do more outdoor play but aren’t sure where to start? This week’s guest blogger is Vicki Shiels, manager of the Waterfront Nursery in Edinburgh. The Waterfront team have recently started on an exciting new outdoor adventure and this blog shares some of their first steps and tips to

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Getting started with Bushcraft

A Practitioner’s Guide: Getting started with Bushcraft

  Its a Scout leader takeover!  This week’s guest blogger is Ignacio Luna Borras – Scout leader and founder of Earth Nature Adventures who shares his hints and tips on getting started with Bushcraft  and how it can offer up the opportunity to experience more outdoor learning and the chance to connect more deeply with

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Home-Schooling Ideas for Outdoor Learning

A Practitioner’s Guide: Home-Schooling Ideas for Outdoor Learning

  Taking home-schooling outdoors! Top Tips for Incorporating Outdoor learning into your home-schooling schedule! Once again we all find ourselves in the midst of another lockdown with the prospect of becoming ‘teacher’ as well as parent again seeming rather daunting to many of us. But fear not the Thrive Outdoors team are on hand with

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Lets talk Cohorts

A Practitioner’s Guide: Lets talk Cohorts

  Are you interested in learning more about what forest school nursery involves?  and how it can offer up the opportunity to experience more outdoor play and learning…then our latest blog is for you! This week’s guest blogger is Zoe Sills, Nursery Manager at Earthtime Forest School Nursery. Zoe shares all her hints and tips

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Play and Wellbeing Tips

A Practitioner’s Guide: Play and Wellbeing Tips

   The power of play!  This week’s blog is from us at Thrive to raise awareness of the benefits of play on a child’s mental health. As some of you may know it is Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week and we thought it might be useful to offer up some handy tips and activities for

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Play in Primary Schools

A Practitioner’s Guide: Play in Primary Schools

  It’s a Primary School takeover!  This week’s guest blogger is Natalie Campbell, Education and Outreach manager & Forest school manager at Earthtime who shares her top tips for incorporating Play in Primary Schools! Free play at any age or stage allows for opportunities to be creative, test and develop problem solving skills, build relationships

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Roberta’s Outdoor Learning Story

A Practitioner’s Guide: Roberta’s Outdoor Learning Story

   Roberta’s story- ‘My outdoor learning journey!’ Back in 2017, Thrive Outdoors started working with Glasgow City Council to create collaborative nursery partnerships across the city to explore outdoor play and learning. One of these partnerships was the Welly Wanderers led by the Jeely Piece Club and involving eight local nurseries in Castlemilk. We caught

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A Practitioner’s Guide: Spaces

A Practitioner’s Guide: Spaces

Is going outdoors like stepping into the unknown? Alastair Davidson shares his approach to establishing an outdoor space for use in the early years.

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A Practitioner’s Guide: The joy of wintertime outdoor play

A Practitioner’s Guide: The joy of wintertime outdoor play

  Time to embrace winter weather! This week’s guest blog is from Dr Claire Warden from Mindstretchers Academy. In this blog Dr Claire shares how she believes embracing winter can bring about many new opportunities for outdoor play and learning as well as some top tips on keeping warm and dry. An interesting and informative

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Active Play Literature Review April 2016

This brief literature review by the University of Strathclyde PhD student Avril Johnstone provides the background literature to the evaluation of Inspiring Scotland’s Active Play Programme. The evaluation has the following research question: does the implementation of an active play programme improve physical activity levels and fundamental movement skills competency in children?

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Evaluation of Active Play in Glasgow by Blake Stevenson – Dec 2016

Read the independent evaluation by Blake Stevenson into the impact of Active Play in Glasgow. This report covers the first cohort of pupils to take part in the programme from August 2016 and was completed in December 2016.

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Free to Play: A guide to creating accessible and inclusive public play spaces

Free to Play: A guide to creating accessible and inclusive public play spaces is designed to ensure that all children and young people, including those with additional support needs, can exercise their right to play in their local communities. Written by play, children’s rights and inclusive play space experts, Theresa Casey and Harry Harbottle, the guide has

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Funders of Play 2018

Funders of Play 2018

This guide contains eligibility, priority and contact details of organisations funding not-for-profit and charitable organisations in Scotland. It has been complied for Inspiring Scotland’s Thrive Outdoors programme and therefore focusses on potential funders of play activities. Funders have been selected through a review of SCVO’s ‘Scottish Directory of Funding for Third Sector Organisations’ and a

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Go2Play Outcome and Evaluation Framework

Download the original Go Play Outcome and Evaluation Framework, set out in 2011, which established the principles of Inspiring Scotland’s play programme.  The guide identifies ways that play organisations can realistically demonstrate their difference though the use of evidence and helps the play sector to identify common ground to assess how play organisations can have the

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Loose Parts Play Toolkit 2019 edition

Loose Parts Play Toolkit 2019 edition

We are pleased to announce the publication of the revised edition of the Loose Parts Play Toolkit. The updated Toolkit provides a greater focus on helping adults develop the skills to support inclusive, all-weather outdoor play in Scotland and encourage them to allow children to play in a less structured and more imaginative manner. Since

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Out to Play – creating outdoor play experiences for children: practical guidance

Out to Play – creating outdoor play experiences for children: practical guidance

This document is a step-by-step guide providing practical advice on how to access outdoors spaces, including land or forest areas owned by local authorities, private landowners or national bodies (such as the Forestry Commission and Scottish Natural Heritage) to create safe, nurturing and inspiring outdoor learning experiences.

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Play Champions Toolkit

This Play Champion Toolkit is designed to support partners working with Primary schools to engage in more activity that is playful within their school day. It outlines a programme, which play workers can use to support primary school children to become ‘leaders’ of play. It is designed for play charities working with schools, school staff

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Play Ranger Toolkit

This Play Ranger Toolkit was developed using the experience and learning of Play Ranger charities supported by Thrive Outdoors, initially under its former name Go2Play. The Play Rangers project focused on providing opportunities for children to access free play within their community – on street corners, or in local parks or woodland. The toolkit is

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Scotland’s Coalition for Outdoor Play and Learning Position Statement

Scotland’s Coalition for Outdoor Play and Learning Position Statement

In 2018, we brought together a broad group of academics and organisations from education, childcare, healthcare, environment and government to create Scotland’s Outdoor Play and Learning Coalition. The Coalition created a bold position statement which committed signatories to working together to embed playing and learning outdoors as an everyday activity and a fundamental part of

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