Outdoor nurseries are sweeping the UK, their focus on fresh air and child-centred learning rather than testing. But can they prepare children for our technology-obsessed world?Golden leaves are falling, wood smoke is rising, and my daughter Milly finds a dressing-up box incongruously placed in a small paddock, puts on a silky pink top and sunhat and climbs a tree. Below her, one boy waves a toy plastic chainsaw at another. “I’m going to chop you,” he says. “It’s a tool, not a weapon,” says his mum, making sure he is safe. Parents are shivering in the cold but no children are complaining. This is Dandelion forest school, one of a growing number of outdoor nurseries, where children learn through outside play, all year round. Open fires, messing around with tools, outdoor toilets and outside in rain and snow: it may sound like a cruel punishment for cotton-wool kids, but forest schools are quietly spreading through Britain, with almost no assistance from the authorities. Read the article in full - Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/education/2014/dec/09/the-school-in-the-woods-outdoor-education-modern-britain
Each article is presented by landscape designer, Tracy Rich, who will examine a single garden and provide design tips based on that garden's layout, materials and planting.
Mien Ruys' own garden in the Netherlands is the ideal place to start a new series on design articles on 'Why this Garden Works'.
Lan Su is a great example of urban garden design. Its whole purpose is to help people relax and to inspire creativity by connecting with nature, even in the centre of town.
The main wow factor of this garden is the large perennial meadow out the back called Oudolf Field after its famous Dutch designer, Piet Oudolf. However, the gallery complex also contains some other very interesting spaces.
Last night (at…