If you have a child that is reluctant to play outdoors, many “indoor” activities can also take place outside. Set up a blanket in the yard and have a tea party in the grass. Bring a book outside and read together. The outdoors is a great place to get messy too, so your child can have more freedom to finger paint or get a little dirty. Read about how children’s development is affected from a lack of connection to nature.
PSYCHOLOGICAL AND PHYSICAL BENEFITS IN NATURE
Nature benefits kids through any or all of a child’s five senses of the mind/body connection through watching, touching, tasting, hearing, and smelling.
Each sense touches the psychological and physical realms that feed off of the other. One of the benefits of nature for children’s health is that nature encourages impressive physiological conversations between the senses promoting attention-holding skills while learning.
MORE ATTENTION IN NATURE
Kids in nature have a way of changing moods, attitudes, and learning responses. When the body and mind are fatigued, learning wanes. If indoor distractions or ADHD are culprits to learning, sunshine and brightness factors can play a significant part in restoring the body.
LET KIDS CHOOSE
Children feel nature’s energy and are inspired by it. The wind, the temperature, the scenery all assist in smoothing the edginess of a child’s disrupted learning capacities. Kids are often more receptive to learning when nature leads the way.
NATURE SOOTHES STRESS
The old adage, “a breath of fresh air” offers a gentle and natural suggestion to feel better about something simply by letting nature fill our bodies with relaxing fresh air. Inhaling outdoor air raises oxygen levels in the brain which encourages deeper breathing. This mental support of kids in nature raises endorphins in the brain that help children feel more at ease.
ADHD DISTRACTIONS IN NATURE
ADHD interjects distraction with concentration issues, impulse-control issues and various disciplinary behaviors. The brain of an ADHD child often experiences the sensory confines of indoor teaching and learning. Nature benefits children, especially within close proximity to the home by reducing ADHD symptoms. Once reduced, stronger connections to successful learning are increased.
PLAYTIME IN NATURE
A subliminal, yet natural synergy happens when kids exert energy outdoors. It has to do with cardiorespiratory fitness. Cardiorespiratory fitness involves the heart, lungs, muscles, brain, and all of the body’s systemic connections. Because of this detailed synergy, a child’s body is naturally queued for better performance, especially when learning in nature.
Including Mother Nature as a teaching and learning resource for children has long been a significant academic tool. Reducing stress, encouraging discipline, awakening attention spans, strengthening bodies and minds, all free of charge, are just the gifts children need. Can’t find the perfect activity for your child? Explore our outdoor nature-themed subscription boxes for both toddlers/young kids and preteens/teens. Each month includes fun activities & tools to build a lifelong interest in the outdoors.