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ERIC Number: EJ1120151
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-2331-0464
Outdoor Explorations with Preschoolers: An Observational Study of Young Children's Developing Relationship with the Natural World
McClain, Cara; Vandermaas-Peeler, Maureen
International Journal of Early Childhood Environmental Education, v4 n1 p37-53 2016
In a longitudinal investigation of young children's developing relationship with and understanding of the natural world, eleven preschoolers and their teacher were filmed for 50 hours during weekly explorations at a local state park. Findings indicated that while outdoors children showed self-awareness with regard to environmental features, generated complex scientific theories around discoveries, and engaged in environmental stewardship. The teacher provided sensitive guidance for children's individual and collaborative explorations and for their appreciation of nature. The findings provide support for the premise that children's understanding of the natural world develops through direct, engaging experiences, supported by adult guidance and encouragement.
North American Association for Environmnental Education. 2000 P Street NW Suite 540, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 202-419-0412; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Preschool Education; Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A