Nord Anglia Education
Nord Anglia
16 May, 2024

Building Green Dreams: Insights from Developing Our Eco Edventure Area

Building Green Dreams Insights from Developing Our Eco Edventure Area - Building Green Dreams Insights from Developing Our Eco Edventure Area
Episode 2
Welcome back to Episode 2 of our blog on our upcoming Eco-Edventure area. In this episode, we will be focusing on why we were keen to develop this area and also share with you some of the challenges we experienced whilst doing so

"Why An Eco-Edventure?"

As early years and primary practitioners we all embrace the importance and benefits of children exploring outside in a natural environment. It provides a rich sensory experience to smell, touch, hear, and taste. This in turn helps develop the child’s sensory skills, which are crucial for cognitive learning. When interacting outside with children, practitioners observe them developing an understanding of growth and decay through being exposed to living organisms such as plants and insects. This leads to a two-way line of enquiry between teacher and child. 

The Early Learning Goals, that form an essential part of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) we follow at BIS Abu Dhabi, state that children will explore the natural world around them, making observations and drawing pictures of animals and plants, they will know some similarities and differences between the natural world around them and contrasting environments, drawing on their experiences and what has been read in class, and they will understand some important processes and changes in the natural world around them, including the seasons and changing states of matter. With our new Eco-Edventure and the experiences it will provide, we will be better able to support our children in reaching these goals.

Retrospective studies have shown that adults’ attitudes to nature are shaped by their childhood experiences with nature. There is a real concern that natural green spaces may be significantly reduced or cease to exist altogether, if the trend of ‘Nature Deficit Disorder’ continues.

What Challenges Did We Face?

Initially, we were asked to ‘think big’ and we came with an elaborate plan of interconnecting biomes under a glass dome. We envisioned cascading waterfalls, spritzing mists, butterflies, and tropical birds. We soon found out that the space we had earmarked for the Eco-Edventure did not lend itself to a large dome. The electricity required to run a functioning air conditioner to keep a glass structure of this size was not sustainable, and so back to the drawing board we went. Through careful research, we discovered that butterflies and tropical birds need specialised care and feeding. We then compromised and decided to have a semi-open structure to allow natural wildlife such as birds and insects to visit. The plans below will give you an insight into the finished Eco-Edventure area.

In episode 3 of our blog, we will focus on the ‘How’, looking more closely at some of the areas in the Eco-Edventure and exploring the function of these and how they will support our students’ learning.

Having seen the plans, we have a question for you, ‘How can we use Tilapia fish in our Eco-Edventure?’ Email us your answers at


The Eco-Edventurers

Angela Burns and Lisa Mulligan


Read Episode 1

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