Let’s Go Outside Because We Can

Let’s Go Outside Because We Can

Being outside is great for kids and can have such a positive impact on the lives of youngsters. A report written by The Children’s Society found that children are generally unhappy, and many issues are affecting them. One of them is the freedom to play outside.

A major problem with this is that children lose contact with the outside world. A survey by the Guardian found that 64% of children only play outside once a week and 28% haven’t been on a country walk for 12 months. The results are terrifying with these children believing that cows hibernate, and conkers grow on oak trees.

Their health is also affected by not playing outside. Studies by the University of Essex demonstrated the positive impact that playing outside can have. Just five minutes of ‘green play’ time can greatly reduce the chances of obesity, a major issue in today’s society. The time outside can also improve the mental wellbeing of children, leading to less stress, anxiety and depression.

The positive impact on self-esteem is also something to consider.

The Educational Benefits

Free and unstructured play outside is also a boost to problem solving skills, focus and self-discipline. This can nurture children to be more interested in their educational needs. Their social skills are also greatly improved. Children who regularly play outside are less likely to be aggressive and more likely to communicate effectively with their peers.

Are Adults To Blame?

Since the 1970s, attitudes have changed towards play. The distance that children now stray away from their home has shrunk by 90% since the 1970s and 43% of adults now believe that children shouldn’t play outdoors (even in secured locations like gardens) unsupervised until they are 14.

Ironically, this has led to more children being admitted to hospital for falling out of bed than trees. In fact, 20% of children under 12 have never climbed a tree.

Building A Safe Environment

What needs to happen is that children are given the opportunity to grow and develop outside by unstructured outdoor play, and be given the chance to interact with their environment. This will lead to children who are more rounded, achieve better in their studies and eventually can make more of their life.

For this to happen, you might want to provide a secure area such as a garden or playground that is closed off and with this in place, is there any reason not to provide children with the opportunity?


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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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