Research shows that time in nature helps children with executive function skills like the ability to focus and concentrate. Vigorous exercise also promotes neurodevelopment by encouraging the growth of new brain cells.
Van Praag, H (2008) Neurogenesis and exercise: past and future directions. Yogman, M., et al., (2018). The Power of Play: A Pediatric Role in Enhancing Development in Young Children.
Children are multi sensory beings that need time to run, explore and connect with the world outside. Important gross motor skills like coordination, endurance and agility are much easier to develop in an outdoor environment.
Spending time in nature has a calming effect on adults and children. It helps to develop skills to cope with anxiety or stress. A recent study indicates that children who spend more time in “green spaces” during the ages of birth through 10 are far less likely to develop mental health disorders during adolescence and into adulthood.
Engemann, K., et al., (2019) Residential green space in childhood is associated with lower risk of psychiatric disorders from adolescence into adulthood.