Closely connected to the playplace we developed exercises that can help professionals (teachers, policy-makers, architects, …) and parents to interpret the video traces of the interactions between children and the outdoor environment. This exercises help to value, read and imagine the outdoors as a learning environment in early childhood.

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This exercise can help you slow down from the hustle and bustle of each day. You can look for a quiet place around the school environment, an inspiring place in the city or a park,....

This exercise makes you reflect on who you are as a person, which values and norms you find important in life where making time is central.

You can do this exercise with children but also completely on your own as an adult, as a parent,... You can just do the exercise on its own, a piece of the exercise or as a basis to then enter into a dialogue with each other about your experiences and thoughts.

Background | Action

Wabi sabi is a wonderful concept from Japanese culture that helps us see the beauty in imperfection and appreciate simplicity. Wabi -sabi is a Japanese beauty that helps remind us that everything is impermanent, imperfect and imperfect. That's why spending time outdoors can be such a powerful and rich experience. It reminds us that we ourselves are part of the bigger picture. Wabi sabi holds up a mirror to us of how much beauty we have in life... and in that mirror we make time to see a glimpse of ourselves as teachers, parents,.... Nature and the outdoor space welcomes you exactly as you are.


(source: from wabi sabi, Beth Kempton, 2019)

Questions | Initiate dialogue

While you are in nature / outdoor space you can ask yourself the following questions or then enter into a dialogue with different people about this

  • How do you feel?
  • What secrets might you want to share with the flowing river or the wise, old tree?
  • What wishes do you want to sprinkle through the forest like fallen leaves so that they are carried away by the wind to a place you do not know?
  • What promise do you make to yourself, on this day, in this place?

download this exercise in pdf