“Then the trees of the forest will sing for joy before the Lord; For He is coming to judge the earth.” 1 Chronicles 16:33
September 29, 2020 - Earlier this month, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch featured two of our member schools - Immanuel Lutheran in Olivette and St. John’s Lutheran in Arnold - in a special story about the benefits of outdoor learning in the age of Covid-19. Thanks to gorgeous weather and innovative teachers, other LESA member schools are doing the same. From open air music classes to socially-distanced study sessions, students in every grade level are celebrating the bounty of God's creations.
For little ones, outdoor learning offers a welcome break from the rules and masks that are required to keep students and teachers safe inside. For older students, it provides a change of scenery and a chance to spread out and study in new surroundings. And for both students and teachers, learning outdoors reminds us that God’s creations are always there to inspire us. Read on - and look above - to see what LESA students are learning in the great outdoors.
“We have a large tent on a concrete patio, some picnic tables, sidewalk chalk, and a lot of creativity and it has made a wonderful outdoor music classroom.” (Zachary Stegman, Music Teacher)
“Here are some of the outdoor activities we've been doing at Word of Life - music class, lunch, and enjoying the beautiful day.”
“Our eighth grade study hall moved outside this month, giving students another opportunity to enjoy the beautiful weather, to learn outside with some sunshine and Vitamin D - and flip the classroom to outdoors.”
“One of our younger classes, Mrs. Gould's 2nd grade class, recently took their spelling test outside using their new yoga mats and lap desks for the first time. Because of Covid, they can't do recess (they can’t touch any balls or go on the playground for exercise, so this allows them a chance to stretch and just be in a different position for learning for a while. They like outdoor learning the best because they can take their masks off.”
“It was a perfect day to do all those math calculations outside! We love how the teachers are working out ways for the students to get a change of scenery every once in a while, and the picnic tables are loving the attention. Our current tables have been bought over the years with funds from Box Tops, uniform resale, and PTO, and we will have 3 more arriving soon. We can’t wait to put them to good use as well.”
“What better way to be inspired than by the great outdoors - on a recent beautiful day, Mrs. Harnagel’s 4th grade class went outside to the courtyard to work on realistic fiction writing.”
“We have been in person learning for a little over six weeks now. In that time, SK-8th grades have grown 20%, we've had 6 chapel services, 2 baptisms, 4 new picnic tables donated, an outdoor classroom built, and all students learning an immeasurable amount! We are so thankful and grateful to our awesome community for following the procedures and helping us stay in school.”
“Our preschoolers have always played in the outdoor classroom, and now K-8 classes are finding ways to “play and learn” outdoors too.”
Looking for a school? Visit our schools page to learn more or book a tour at one our 34-member Lutheran schools in the St. Louis Metro area and southern Illinois.