Posts tagged #Outdoor play

Back to Nature

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You cannot go wrong with bubbles & polka dots on a summer day! One of the special places at our school is the nature playground. It is a place where children can run, dig, plant, play in water, collect rocks, read on a tree stump, crawl through tires & see-saw with their friends. 

The other day when I was there, I saw a sand and water table turned into a pot of soup. It might have looked like mulch, soil and water to you, but a group of children worked together to cook up a delicious soup for all to enjoy.

When you walk through our nature playground, you will see children banging chimes in the music center, building castles with blocks, making forts and painting at the outdoor easel.

There is nothing typical about our playground. You will not see a swing or slide. What you will see is creativity, imagination and brain building happening in nature. We bring the learning outside and have lots of fun too!

You can get back to nature with your children at home. Take some time with your child this summer to:

·      Collect rocks, leaves and seashells on a nature walk and then count all the things you gathered.

·      Separate your items into groups and classify them by color or shape.

·      Talk about what you see around you – bugs, butterflies, birds and plants.

·      Plant flowers in a garden or clay pot.

·      Take chalk outside and draw on the pavement.

·      Play hopscotch or jump rope.

·      Wash cars, bikes & windows with a bucket of soap & hose.

·      Blow bubbles

Summer is the perfect time to learn outdoors and make some wonderful memories with your family!

Posted on July 12, 2019 .

Year-round Outdoor Play Can Boost Kids' Performance in School

Spending free time outside can particularly benefit a child’s development when pursued year-round.

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Outdoor play in childhood is associated with many soft skills that are important for school success, such as executive functioningExecutive functioning is defined as a set of mental processes that enable us to plan, prioritize, focus attention, filter distractions, and more. These skills are important assets for learning in preschool, elementary school, and beyond.

A recent study from Norway looked at the associations between time spent outdoors during child care and executive functioning. Among children ages 4 through 7, those who spent more time outside during child care performed better on an executive function assessment and showed fewer inattention-hyperactivity symptoms. Further, numerous studies have found that playful engagement with nature in kids under age 12 was linked with improved mental health and emotional regulation.

Read more from Childtrends.org.