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The Importance Of Learning Outside This Summer

In between stay-at-home orders and freezing temperatures, kids haven’t had as much outside time as they should! Did you know that nature promotes learning both directly and indirectly? That is why students need nature this summer more than ever before. Online learning has allowed students to learn in the comfort of their own homes. Kids can also take advantage of learning in nature. Whether in the backyard or park, learning outside will help protect them against summer learning loss. Learning outside will also help keep their brains active.

In the quest for better grades and improvement in academic performance, parents and children should be open to all learning resources. There are both academic and social benefits to learning outside. Outdoor learning can even help with quarantining and stay-at-home orders. Read on to learn more about the importance of learning outside this summer:

Five Ways Learning Outside Furthers A Child’s Development

  1. Nature Improves A Child’s Attention

Attention is a vital part of a child’s development. Now more than ever, more children are having difficulties focusing and retaining information. Children may have difficulty focusing because of what’s happening in the world around them. Lack of attention could also be the result of something as simple as hunger or lack of sleep. Ongoing lack of focus may be caused by ADHD. Spending time outside, in nature, helps restore concentration and interest in children. In fact, CBC News reported that time spent in the outdoors can improve attention span, reduce stress and help with self-discipline. Taking a child with ADHD on a 20-minutes walk in the park can even be as effective as if they took a prescribed medication.

2. Helps Apply What They Learned To Real-Life Scenarios

Children can take what they learned in the online or in-person classroom and apply it to real-life situations. An American Institutes For Research (AIR) study found nature helps improve academic success and students’ attitudes. Children will appreciate math, social studies and science more! The study found that children who spent time outdoors showed significant improvements in conflict resolution. Students also demonstrated gains in leadership, and cooperation.
You can help your children apply what they have learned from school in nature this summer. Get creative with them by starting a nature club using online tips from the Children and Nature Network!

Outdoor Learning Is Healthy For Children and Adults

3. Nature Settings Can Promote Socialization and Creativity

The environment in which children learn can make all the difference in their academic success. This past year, many children have had to adjust to learning online from home. In some ways, this has impacted their socialization and creativity. Learning outside in nature helps kids be socially safe and explore. Being outdoors can effectively enhance peer relationships. Children may have felt marginalized when it came to social interactions this year. Nature allows them to interact with plants and animals and learn more about them. Additionally, children’s play and learning opportunities outdoors often allow for more creativity. 

Parents can encourage their children to use their imagination and problem solving skills when outdoors. They can use sticks, stones, mud or plants to get creative and solve problems or develop stories.

Learning Outside Is Important For Young Learners

4. Learning Outside Helps Keep Kids’ Brains Active

Outdoor learning is great for the brains’ of children. During the summertime, when summer learning loss threatens, learning outside helps keep kids’ brains active. The Children and Nature Network found that with daily exposure to the outdoors, children’s cognitive abilities were enhanced. Contact with nature and play in natural settings creates nature-smart kids. Children should be getting at least 60 minutes outside a day to maintain their mental and physical health. For both normal cognitive functioning children and children with ADHD, outdoor learning can help boost brain power.

Include outdoor play as a daily part of your child’s routine. Allow them to get creative with their outdoor learning activities. You can even encourage other family members to join in!

5. Nature Increases Childrens’ Self-Discipline

Many children, especially those with ADHD, have difficulties managing their impulse control. Unfortunately, this can hinder their ability to learn. Taking your child on a hike, walk or to explore in the backyard acts as a tool to recharge their self-discipline. Children in inner-cities are especially at risk of academic underachievements and social challenges. Self-discipline helps them concentrate on what they’re learning and retain it. Impulse control and self-discipline are directly linked to academic success. Contact with the outdoors can significantly improve attention. It can also help with deficit difficulties and allow children to improve their self-discipline and stability. 

Learning Outside Improves The Mind And Body

This summer, help keep your child’s brain active with GradePower Learning Summer Programs. Our reputable tutors keep kids learning all summer long! Summer learning helps maintain that momentum into the fall. We’ll help kids apply what they learn in our programs to real-world situations. Parents can also help them learn by encouraging learning outside. Sign up for our summer learning programs today!

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