Creative Arts in an Outdoor Classroom – An Andy Goldsworthy Inspiration
Being outdoors and finding beauty go perfectly together like nothing before. From flowers, to sunsets and sunrises, to waterfalls, ice, colourful leaves, snow and much more are the wonderful things that the great outdoors provides on a daily basis, but one just has to go and discover them.
I can confidently say that Andy Goldsworthy would agree with me when I say that bringing the arts outdoors and creating art work outdoors is something that every child has a right too during their childhood. Natural and loose part materials are also the perfect items to use when creating art. It creates a learning opportunity that encourages imagination, creativity, and problem-solving skills etc., and allows children to have unlimited choice as to what they would like to creates. Involving natural materials in art also provide the chance for children to not always focus on the end product, but rather the process instead. Whether it is exploring the properties and elements of mud, water, sticks etc., the children can use their time to fully understand these items rather than having to follow step by step instructions in order to develop the same themed craft that all their other peers are making during that same moment.
Andy Goldsworthy is one of the leading artists that uses natural materials to create piece of art in their own natural environments. I invite you to watch these videos that I found on Twitter to understand who Andy Goldsworthy is and the work that he does, and how his work can inspire young children’s art work in your outdoor classroom. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9DjCMqtJr0Q https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kw0UG_VRUPM&app=desktop
When we keep Andy Goldsworthy’s style of art in mind when we are outdoors we can begin to use our outdoor classroom to its fullest. I would suggest that you introduce the idea of Andy Goldsworthy and his style of art to the picture first before heading outside. Show them pictures, videos, and books of some possibilities when working with natural materials. An adult by the name of Jeanette Nyberg posted a blog about Andy Goldsworthy and his work. She showed the children what his art was all about and when they visited a nearby stream a little while after the children were inspired. By providing the children with a provocation or an invitation and then stepping back to Observe, Wait and Listen (O.W.L) you can truly let the children lead the play from there. You can read more about this blog at http://tinyrottenpeanuts. com/kids-learn-installation-art-andy-goldsworthy/
Now that we understand how the creative arts can be brought outside and the benefits of allowing children the time and providing them with the appropriate materials and spaces, we can now have a more effective and complete outdoor classroom.