Learning outside the classroom manifesto

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National Parks UK supports the Learning Outside the Classroom Manifesto and is committed to:

  • promote opportunities for the understanding and enjoyment of the special qualities of the national parks by the public;
  • work practically and strategically with a range of partner agencies, at local and national levels, to promote learning outside the classroom, especially in UK National Parks;
  • work with a wide audience including those from urban areas, black and minority ethnic groups, those from different cultures and countries, people with disabilities and young people;
  • inspire people through outdoor learning experiences to help care for the environment and for national parks in particular and to make choices in their daily lives that will benefit the environment and promote sustainable development.
reach higher - school children climbing a steep hill in the Lake District

Many of the UK's 15 national park authorities provide an education service that offers assistance to education and community groups to help them access and learn about the UK National Parks. Many of these services also provide expert staff to deliver curriculum linked activities both within the national parks and in schools and colleges and a wide range of informal learning opportunities for families and adults.

The National Park Education Services will work with and seek to influence national education agendas such as Sustainable Schools and the National Curriculum to promote opportunities for learning outside the classroom and to raise awareness in schools of the tremendous resources for learning available through our national parks.       

The UK's family of national parks contains our finest landscapes and wildlife habitats including mountains, moorland, woodland and heathland, traditional farmland and historic buildings, archaeological sites, lakes, rivers and coasts. As well as providing opportunities for learning, recreation and exercise these areas offer space, tranquillity and an invaluable contrast to urban lifestyles. It is important that all young people have the opportunity to experience these places and their special qualities. Today's young people are the residents, visitors, landowners and decision makers of the future and it is essential that they grow up with an awareness of the immense value of these places in order to help ensure that future generations are well placed to benefit from them, too.