Completed research projects
Axis 1 - Outdoor teaching practices and Axis 2 - Educational benefits of outdoor education
Jean-Philippe Ayotte-Beaudet, Félix Berrigan
Olivier Arvisais, Caroline Bouchard, Geneviève Lessard, Maïa Morel, Ophélie Tremblay, Sylvain Turcotte, Valérie Vinuesa
Ministère de l'Éducation du Québec and CRÉPA
In Quebec, many teachers use outdoor environments to facilitate learning situations. In the fall of 2020, the Ministère de l'Éducation du Québec mandated Université de Sherbrooke professors Jean-Philippe Ayotte-Beaudet, from the Faculty of Education, and Félix Berrigan, from the Faculty of Physical Activity Sciences, to study outdoor education practices in school settings.
The two objectives of this study were :
- to describe the perceived effects of outdoor education on students' physical activity and learning in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic;
- to describe outdoor education teaching practices in a school context in terms of to student learning.
- to portray the perceived effects of outdoor education on physical activity practices and student learning in a pandemic setting, and describe outdoor education teaching practices in a school setting in terms of student learning;
- to design an online questionnaire that was completed by 1,008 preschool, elementary, and secondary school teachers. Over 130 individual interviews were conducted during the 2020-2021 school year. These participants are located throughout Quebec, in urban, semi-urban and rural areas.
Axis 2 - Benefits of outdoor education for students
Abdelkrim Hasni and Alain Paquette
To help students make connections between their learning and their everyday environment, teachers should help them develop their ability to initiate scientific investigations. In this context, outdoor environments seem to be particularly appropriate for developing students' ability to make spontaneous observations about living things. In the scientific literature, there are few studies that measure the medium-term effects of such educational interventions. The purpose of this research is to compare the ability of Cycle 3 elementary school students to make spontaneous observations about living things one week and two months after a contextualized educational intervention in their living environment. To achieve this research objective, we recruited grade 5 and 6 students aged 10-12 years (n = 116) in the province of Quebec, Canada, during the first containment due to COVID-19. Students participated in a citizen science project, Spy-Crawlers, from their homes. Data were collected through structured interviews. In addition to informing us about the effects of such an intervention on students' ability to make spontaneous observations about living things independently, the results will allow for the development of a novel analytical framework for categorizing students' spontaneous observations about living things. This research will thus contribute to the development of methodological tools for testing hypotheses that are generally accepted, but have never been clearly validated empirically.