Why is nature play important
Immersion in nature positively affects and supports our overall wellbeing. Nature is healing and soothing and spending more time outdoors benefits our physical and mental health.
Nature play gives space and time for connection to oneself and with others. It plays a powerful role in strengthening our family relationships.
Research provides substantial backing to the immense benefits that nature provides to children’s growth, development, learning and overall wellbeing. Not just for children, but also for parents and educators relationships alike.
Most significantly it allows children to connect with Mother Earth, learn more deeply about culture, the traditions, the ways of First Nations people and develop a real respect, understanding and appreciation of our Australian Indigenous culture. As children learn and play on land, they connect with country, they develop understandings that are only learnt through hands on experiential learning on land. The nature programs foster Environmental stewards in our children, inspiring a generation to protect and look after our country. This is vitally important in our world today.
Benefits of nature play and learning
Improves immune system, increases Vitamin D levels, strengthens eye muscles, and reduces obesity. Increases oxygen intake and increases energy.
Fosters social connections and friendships, increases co-operation and collaboration. Supports children's independence. Develops kindness and empathy for nature and people!
Supports brain development and understanding skills. It expands vocabulary and expressive language. It builds negotiation and compromise skills.
Nature play supports holistic development. It actively builds resilience and positive wellbeing. Supports a positive self-esteem and self-awareness and promotes confidence. It improves mood, reduces stress, promotes happy endorphins and helps to clear our minds.
Outdoor learning promotes critical thinking, problem solving and decision making. It improves concentration and creativity. It also increases enthusiasm for learning.
Outdoor play engages whole body use and develops core strength, agility, co-ordination, balance and small muscle skills.
Why do we want to provide this program to the community?
The benefits of nature play and outdoor learning are widely documented in research. Nature immersion fosters holistic development and actively nurtures positive wellbeing.
In this blog Bec recently wrote for Nature Play Qld, she explains why she's an educator in the nature play profession and loves bush kindy programs. Read on to hear her passion and the why.