Why Time Outside Should Not Be Discouraged During The Pandemic

While there is much concern over the spread of the Covid-19 virus, there are reasons why outside time should not be discouraged this winter. In fact, time outside, whether for fun and games or lessons should be encouraged this winter more than ever, here is why.

Why Is The Outside A Worry?

For some, more time outside this time of year is a worry. Colder weather is linked to the spread of the virus and more like it. However, there are many things about the outside that makes it harder for the virus to spread. For instance:

More Space

Indoor classrooms mean that 20-30 children can be located in a much smaller space. The virus can travel up to 18 feet away and that can mean nearly all the children in a classroom, as well as the teachers, can be affected. Yet outside, children are more spread out, therefore, there is less transmission.

If you’re also able to split classes and have some children learning outside while others remain indoors, you’re effectively reducing the number together at any one time. Less children in one room means that the spread of Covid-19 can be less.

Less Surfaces

Classrooms are full of surfaces that need to be cleaned and can hide viruses away for a long time. These need to be cleaned regularly. But outside, there is often fewer surfaces and less surface space. This makes it harder for the droplets of the virus to be transmitted.

UV Rays

Research has shown that UV rays can kill coronavirus. While UVA and UVB is significantly less effective than UVC, it still has some impact on coronavirus and there is more of these rays outside than there are inside.

Health Benefits

Spending time outside is considered good for physical and mental health. Children who are outside are more likely to exercising, which is good for good, healthy bodies. In addition, outside time is really good for mental health, helping to reduce stress and anxiety that can lead to poor health.

Outside Time Is Useful Learning Space

In addition, the outside space is a useful area for learning. Children who regularly learn outside are able to retain more of their lessons, improve cognitive skills, and are more positive. Therefore, not only are they’re getting a rounded education that can help bring out the best in them.

Conclusion

Outside time, whether in the playground or under a school canopy should not be discouraged even as the weather gets colder and wetter. In fact, it can be a useful space to help reduce the spread of Covid-19 as well. Learning outside is also good for their education, mental health and social skills. So, don’t stop teaching outside, ensure that you’re still taking your students outside regularly for some learning.

https://www.healthline.com/health-news/covid-19-virus-wind-carry-6-feet

https://www.lotc.org.uk/outdoor-learning-has-huge-benefits-for-children-and-teachers-so-why-isnt-it-used-in-more-schools/

https://www.pentagonplay.co.uk/news-and-info/outdoor-play-improves-mental-health

Able Canopies Ltd. design, manufacture and install canopies and shade structures at schools, nurseries and educational settings to enable year-round Free Flow Outdoor Play and Outdoor Learning.

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