OUTDOOR learning sessions will be provided to pupils at more than 100 schools, deputy first minister John Swinney announced yesterday.

The Education Secretary joined pupils from the 100 schools at The Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh, to confirm the schools had signed up to the scheme.

It is hoped that spending time in nature will offer a range of benefits for the pupils, who are from Scotland’s most disadvantaged areas. Swinney said: “Learning outdoors has many benefits, from developing an appreciation for the natural world to problem-solving, as well as improving the health and wellbeing of both pupils and teachers.

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“Building in opportunities for outdoor learning into everyday school activity means young people from all backgrounds have the opportunities to engage, understand and help our natural world.”

Scottish Natural Heritage will work with the schools to deliver regular outdoor learning to more than 3000 pupils over the year.