Fieldwork and the outdoor classroom
In undertaking fieldwork, students practise a range of skills, gain new geographical insights and begin to appreciate different perspectives on the world around them. When well-planned and organised, fieldwork presents a wide range of learning opportunities for all pupils with special educational need and disability. Working with students in the outdoor classroom is exciting, challenging and motivating. Fieldwork is a requirement of the National Curriculum and is compulsory for GCSE and A Level assessment. Pupils themselves may be able to contribute to the risk assessment and suggest appropriate strategies for minimising risk – especially if shown visual/video footage. For residential field courses, there are additional issues associated with domestic arrangements such as washing, sleeping and accessing social and educational facilities. It is always important to check pupils' personal files and, where necessary, to speak with the students and their parents/carers about the most appropriate steps to be taken to enable them to access and enjoy outdoor learning.