At the CDL we value outdoor learning and access to nature. Children play outside every day, weather permitting. Children spend time outdoors daily both on our outdoor natural playground and by taking short walking trips to engage with “The Beyond”. “The Beyond” spaces are natural outdoor play areas, in our urban setting, on the beautiful UW-Madison campus. Regular visits to these outdoor spaces, enhance the depth and richness of children’s experiences to explore and make new discoveries in “The Beyond”.
The CDL’s outdoor spaces are set up for exploration and learning with an emphasis on connecting to nature in our urban setting. Our space is thoughtfully planned to provide a place for large motor activities and access to natural areas such as gardens, sand, water, trees, birds and insects. Natural and open-ended materials are used whenever possible to enhance play including pinecones, stones, sticks, leaves, etc. Children are encouraged and have the opportunity to engage in the inquiry process within this natural environment.