Building your child’s interest in the natural world around him and getting him outside to enjoy nature brings a host of benefits.
Positive Benefits of Nature
- Builds the Imagination
- Strengthens Problem Solving Skills
- Improve Eyesight (Children who spend time in nature are less likely to develop myopia, otherwise known as nearsightedness.)
- Reduces Symptoms of Attention Deficit Disorder
- Reduces Stress
- Improves Academic Performance
- Increases Environmental Awareness
As a parent, you have the power to take action and get your child involved in nature. Try these techniques for adding nature time to your child’s schedule.
- Take a nature walk once a week. Make it a family tradition to get out and about for an hour or two once a week and gradually build up to more time spent outdoors. The National Wildlife Federation recommends one hour a day of outdoor time to boost your child’s growth.
- Take your child to the park. Let your child play in the park while you tie up loose ends from work. Find a comfy bench and go through emails or make notes for that big meeting the next day if you must, but don’t deny your child the opportunity to get fresh air and exercise while you do it.
- Explore the backyard. You may be surprised by what your little one discovers in the backyard. Encourage him to explore on his own while you relax, or get involved and help him investigate the wonders of nature hiding in the backyard.
- Talk about nature. Make a point to talk about nature. Commenting on the weather, the changing seasons and the flowers and animals you observe throughout the day will show your child that the natural world around him is important and may trigger a lifelong interest.