Sensory Integration and Contact with Nature: Designing Outdoor Inclusive Environments

Author: Cosco, N. and Moore, R.

This article brings to the layperson the language of designing outdoor environments for a wide variety of special needs. Montessorians will notice correlations between the designers’ professional vocabulary and Montessori concepts. Territorial development, for example, is akin to the prepared environment’s providing layers of learning for “expanding the ‘known’ world by pressing against the ‘unknown.'” Drawing on a solid research base, Cosco and Moore suggest both guiding principles and specific applications (including illustrative photos) to create environments that promote physical and mental health, attention, cognitive functioning, and motor development for an inclusive community of learners.

In The NAMTA Journal Vol. 34, No. 2, 2009