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Nature Play

Why Children Need Outside Time (and lots of it)

Posted by: Rhonda April 19, 2016

Longer school days, more homework, urbanization, organized sports, and daily access to technology. . . . we all know the statistics: children are spending less time in nature than ever before. Studies confirm that kids now spend up to 90% of their leisure time inside. Sadly, many schools contribute to this trend.

“We don’t place the proper value on time outside, time without intentional goals or structured expectations,” writes Lauren Maples, founder of Bija School in Brooklyn, NY. “This is robbing our kids of joy and challenge—both such meaningful parts of life.”

“Unlike a structured school day, the routine of home life, and sports, there is no telling what one will encounter outside. Whether it is crossing a stream, building a fort, or figuring out how to scale a rock, time in nature helps kids figure stuff out. When kids learn to problem solve in situations that are fun and spontaneous they are able to carry those skills into their schoolwork and daily life.”

Time in nature is not just a luxury; it’s a very important educational platform which every teacher and parent should embrace. How and where should you begin? Read more.