Natural Curiosity Webinar Part 4: Using School Grounds Effectively to Enrich Learning

Natural Curiosity Webinar Part 4: Using School Grounds Effectively to Enrich Learning

Book authors Doug Anderson, Julie Comay, Lorraine Chiarotto


World Rights
Publication date: November 2020
ISBN 978077272644A
Our price: $10.00
Author's bio

This fourth and final webinar in our four part series, Using School Grounds Effectively to Enrich Learning, features Julie Whitfield, principal at Humewood Public School (TDSB), Ticia Heibein, kindergarten teacher at Forest Hill Public School (TDSB) and Steve Smith, baseball coach at the Toronto Playgrounds Baseball Association. Our speakers discuss the benefits and risks of outdoor play and learning and their strategies for sustaining outdoor inquiry in all weather.

In our previous webinar, we explored ways to invite the land, relationship, and an Indigenous lens to virtual learning. We heard about slowing down and taking care of ourselves, our students, and the land, as an antidote to the current crisis in education. In this webinar, we will highlight the many possibilities presented by the school ground as the place for natural curiosity. We will discuss the practical steps that begin to implement these ideas. As we approach winter, how can we continue to teach outdoors and ground learning intimately in place and community? We again invite participants to reflect on their unique teaching circumstances, opportunities and strengths that they bring to their learning communities.

If you are wondering how to continue this learning, please visit ( and stay tuned for announcements about our winter webinar series: Embracing the Shift.

Payment Options

We are again offering a pay-what-you-can access to this webinar recording. You have the choice to check out at the set rate of $10, or enter the following discount codes to check out for $5 (coupon code: natural5) or $0 (coupon code: natural0). If using coupon code natural0 please choose UTP Account as payment method. The email address you use to check out for this order will be shared with Natural Curiosity for further contact. All of the proceeds will go towards creating more Natural Curiosity professional learning opportunities.

Julie Whitfield, Principal at Humewood, TDSB

Julie Whitfield is the principal of Humewood School, TDSB. Participating in the Outdoor Play and Learning program in 2018, Julie led her school into becoming a leader of improved and enriched outdoor play. Julie will speak to the impact of enriched outdoor time on learning and sustainable strategies in the time of COVID.

Ticia Heibein, Teacher at Forest Hill, TDSB

Ticia Heibein is our next presenter. She has been working with TDSB for 18 years and has taught from Kindergarten-Grade 8 in various roles. Ticia began working with TDSB Eco Schools in 2004 when she watched an ELL JK student share her alphabet knowledge using sticks to create her letters. This resonated with Ticia, as she would observe time again that nature was a great equalizer in scaffolding the success of all students to show their knowledge and demonstrate learning in new ways. Ticia is in her fourth year of an Action Research Group that is a partnership between TDSB EcoSchools and OISE University of Toronto. Her research looks at how connecting children with nature in the outdoor classroom helps promote self-regulation, compassion and stewardship practices. Ms. Heibein is currently teaching FDK at Forest Hill Jr. and Sr. Public School.

Steve Smith, Baseball Coach at Toronto Playgrounds

Steve Smith has been working with children and the outdoors for his entire life. He supported children in outdoor play and learning back in the 80ís, when Harbourfront still had an adventure playground. For over 25 years, through the Toronto Playgrounds Baseball Association, Steve has been introducing children and youth to the wonders of baseball, a service he continues to perform in the time of COVID.