Outside the Square Cover

Outside the Square

55 Practical ideas for early years educators

Outside the Square offers practical, tried-and-true ideas with links to both the EYLF and NQS. It includes:

  • ideas for how to plan and establish routines and use resources creatively and imaginatively
  • suggestions for group times, ways to extend indoor and outdoor programs and building stronger relationships with children and families
  • 'taking it further' suggestions to extend on learning opportunities

The book will spark enthusiasm for educators who continually strive to make a positive difference to the lives of the children they teach.


Ages: 0-5 | Pages: 112 | Code: TS0282 | ISBN: 9781925145083

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Book (physical) - A good old fashioned printed book, ideal if you like the feeling of holding it in your hand as you flip through the pages. We will ship your books from our warehouse within 1-3 days.
Vital Source Ebook - You can read, highlight, annotate, create flashcards, and collaborate with colleagues and instructors via any web browser, or for offline access download the Vital Source Bookshelf App (Mac, PC, iOS & Android). The ebooks are available immediately and can be accessed via your filebox. Vital Source books have limited printing functionality.

Orders are normally dispatched within 1 to 3 business days. Goods are shipped by New Zealand Post or by local courier, depending upon the location, with a delivery expectation of 1 to 3 business days. We will email dispatch confirmation and tracking details.

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We are happy to supply orders from outside Australia and New Zealand. Orders will be dispatched by International Air which has delivery expectations of 3-21 business days depending upon your location.

We offer a 14-day inspection with freepost return on all printed products.
Please be aware that we cannot offer an approval period or accept returns on digital resources, so orders for these resources are final.

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Picture of Sarah Wilson

Sarah Wilson

Sarah (B.Ed, Grad Dip EC) is a passionate early childhood teacher who has worked in the early childhood (EC) sector for over 15 years. She has taught in several sessional kinder settings and early learning centres and worked in educator roles from education leader through to lunchtime cover. Part of Sarah’s teaching focus has been supporting children and families with additional needs and developing inclusive, respectful practices for all children and families. She has a passion for teaching wellbeing in EC settings with a focus on kindness, empathy and mindfulness. Sarah prefers to apply elements of emergent curriculum, the arts and bush/nature play opportunities when developing programs with children. Sarah is an enthusiastic educator, who keeps building meaningful connections with children, families and colleagues at the forefront of every interaction.

Sarah is co-author of The EYLF and NQS without Tears with Susie Rosback and author of Outside the Square: 55 practical ideas for early years educators. She is committed to continuing to contribute to the EC sector and advocating for the wellbeing of children, their family/carers and educators.


Supporting WELLBEING and IDENTITY (social and emotional development)
IDEA 1 – Establishing the rules6
IDEA 2 – Finding a spot8
IDEA 3 – Photos and name tags10
IDEA 4 – Bonjour mon amie12
IDEA 5 – What do I need to do now?14
IDEA 6 – Roaming snack16
IDEA 7 – It’s pack-up time18
IDEA 8 – Line up! Line up!20
IDEA 9 – Diversion tactics 2222
IDEA 10 – Feely box24
IDEA 11 – Relaxation25
IDEA 12 – It’s my turn next26
Supporting COMMUNICATION and IDENTITY (group times)
IDEA 13 – Sharing bag28
IDEA 14 – Jack the Bear30
IDEA 15 – Crazy conductor32
IDEA 16 – What’s in the box?34
IDEA 17 – Which one am I?36
IDEA 18 – Show me, show me38
IDEA 19 – Stories with boxes40
IDEA 20 – Drama bags42
IDEA 21 – Tap-tap pass44
IDEA 22 – Shoe soup46
Supporting COMMUNITY and IDENTITY (building respectful relationships with families)
IDEA 23 - Emergency bag/evacuations and displaying medical needs48
IDEA 24 – Effective communication with families50
IDEA 25 – Home visits and family zone noticeboard52
IDEA 26 – ‘I love you’ book54
IDEA 27 – Visiting the art gallery56
Supporting LEARNING and COMMUNICATION (inside play)
IDEA 28 – Mixing colours58
IDEA 29 – Finger painting/sensory play60
IDEA 30 – Clay play62
IDEA 31 – Writing with play dough64
IDEA 32 – Writing table66
IDEA 33 – Postcards for Teddy68
IDEA 34 – Self-portraits70
IDEA 35 – Hear it, draw it72
IDEA 36 – Mural making74
IDEA 37 – Rock dinosaurs76
IDEA 38 – Lion faces with soft pastel78
IDEA 39 – Squeeze and sort80
IDEA 40 – Coffee sensory play82
IDEA 41 – Car wash sensory play84
IDEA 42 – Herb grinding86
IDEA 43 – Vegie monsters88
IDEA 44 – Pattern making 3D90
IDEA 45 – Pattern making 2D92
IDEA 46 – Space tent94
IDEA 47 – Electrical pull apart/recycled art96
IDEA 48 – Cityscape98
IDEA 49 – Robots100
IDEA 50 – Gifts for children to make
Supporting WELLBEING and LEARNING (outside play)
IDEA 51 – Ice tap-tap104
IDEA 52 – Fairy play106
IDEA 53 – Washing dishes/clothes108
IDEA 54 – Sandpit café110
IDEA 55 – Potions112