NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The new normal for New York City schools now includes outdoor education.

Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza stopped by a physical education class in a park near Public School 143 in Queens on Thursday.

He even joined in on the fun, participating in some of the student’s activities.

Schools: The New Normal

Carranza praised the school’s program and explained why it’s essential.

“Our outdoor learning initiatives provide our students with the time that they need to be able to exercise and flex their curiosity muscles,” he said.

The chancellor says there are currently 11 sites utilizing outdoor learning.

He says the city continues to work with engineers to assure the air quality in school buildings is safe when all classes have to be held indoors.

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