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BLOG: Early Years Resources outdoor loose parts play launch

The importance of outdoor learning is rapidly being recognised more and more amongst early years practitioners. This has led to a movement towards the incorporation of nature and the great outdoors in learning and play, from minibeast hunts in the garden to outdoor classroom setups and everything in between.

Outdoor learning provides children and adults with a wider scope for activities and a wealth of areas to explore and discover. The benefits of learning and playing outside can include:

  • An appreciation for nature and the world around
  • A development in curiosity for exploring and investigating
  • Growing self-confidence and independence
  • Getting outdoors can have a positive impact on children’s health and wellbeing
  • A refresh of children’s learning environment which can lead to effective learning
  • Children may feel a sense of freedom which can, in turn, lead to improved confidence, social skills, teamwork and problem solving
  • Adoption of an active and healthy lifestyle

EYR Exclusive Outdoor Loose Parts

The importance of outdoor learning and play has been reflected in the latest product launch by EYR in partnership with PACEY. This selection of products has been developed in-house by a team of specialist buyers and product developers from EYR to encourage outdoor play using natural resources.

It was important to EYR as a company to make sure these pieces were:

  • Made in the UK
  • Made with FSC certified wood
  • Where possible, contain recycled and upcycled elements

“The idea behind this range was to create really versatile pieces that can be manipulated to create exciting setups and unique areas of exploration. They are designed to excite, stimulate and encourage children to play and want to learn outdoors” Katie Rhone – product developer at EYR

Educational benefits of the range:

The educational benefits of this range include but are not limited to:

  • Physical development: used individually or together to create an obstacle course, pieces such as the balance beams (link to the wooden balance beam) and stepping stones (link to the wooden stepping stone toppers) can be used for children to develop hand-eye coordination, core balance and gross motor skills as they move the pieces.
  • Problem-solving: using pieces from the range to create an obstacle course, children can learn to face problems and find a solution. This is a crucial skill necessary for later life.
  • Imaginative play: a lot of the pieces included in this range are fairly open-ended, for example, a tyre could become a bowl, a bath for a doll, a target, and wheels on a car or anything your little ones choose. The versatile and open-ended nature of the items means that children can let their creativity and imaginations run wild.
  • Communication skills: children can work in a team to build various scenarios from obstacle courses to crate dens and water channels. Working together will encourage children to express themselves, and improve their social skills and communication methods.
  • Understanding the world: it goes without saying that simply moving your play or learning zone outdoors will improve children’s understanding of the world around them but the selected resources can further develop this. Encourage your little ones to set up a minibeast hotel or create one out of crates and discover the miniature world of these tiny animals!
  • Early maths: the resources can be used in a whole host of ways to introduce children to early maths concepts. For example, stepping stones could be used to combine counting and physical development. Another example is asking children to throw a certain number of beanbags into the tyres to explore their addition and subtraction. Or finally, encourage your little ones to explore the concept of forces, friction and gravity with water channels or the on the move pallet.

About EYR

Early Years Resources is a reputable supplier with 30 years of experience in the education market. Their mission: “to be inclusive and meet the educational needs of all EYFS and KS1 children” has led to the sourcing and developing a variety of innovative products for the early years education sector that inspire a love of learning and take the stress out of teaching. For more information about EYR and their products then click here.

“PACEY is delighted to be working closely with EYR to be able to offer our members such a brilliant range of educational resources through our PACEY shop. With EYR’s 30 years of experience they are perfectly placed to select a variety of fun resources that will enhance children’s learning through play and enable them to explore the great outdoors.” Julie Doyle - Head of Commercial, PACEY

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