Teaching and Learning Science Outdoors in Schools' Immediate Surroundings at K-12 Levels


This literature review synthesizes empirical data of 18 articles published between 2000 and 2015 about teaching and learning science outdoors from kindergarten to secondary levels (K–12). We asked four questions: (1) What are the general characteristics of the corpus of studies on teaching and learning science outdoors in schools’ immediate surroundings at K–12 levels? (2) What are the authors’ aims for conducting studies about teaching and learning science outdoors? (3) What are the main outcomes related to teaching and learning science outdoors in schools’ immediate surroundings? (4) What further studies should, according to the selected articles, be conducted in the future? We identified three categories of authors’ aims: environmental education, science education, and outdoor education. The main outcomes are classified into four categories: 1) learning, 2) student attitude or interest, 3) other students’ perceptions, and 4) challenges to outdoor science teaching. Finally, in light of the review, we discuss how further studies should consider learning outcomes, students’ attitudes, challenges, and methodological guidelines.

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