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Is contact with nature important for healthy child development? state of the evidence

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Abstract

We know that children need nature … or do we? There are certainly many reasons to think that nature plays an important role in child development. For many of us, intuition emphatically asserts that nature is good for children. We hold intuitions such as, ‘every kid needs a dog’, ‘children need a nice yard to play in’, and ‘children need “fresh air”’. Beyond these intuitions, there are also well-reasoned theoretical arguments as to why humans in general – and therefore children – might have an inborn need for contact with nature (e.g., S. Kaplan, 1995; Wilson, 1984). And there is a growing body of qualitative research consistent with this idea (Bardill, 1997; Hart, 1979; R. Moore, 1989; R. C. Moore, 1986; Nabhan, 1994; Sebba, 1991; Sobel, 1993; Titman, 1994). But what do we really know about the value of nature in promoting child development? What systematic evidence is there for or against this possibility? Is children's need for nature established fact, yet-to-be-substantiated folk theory, or simply myth? The question of nature's role in healthy child development is increasingly urgent. A consistent concern among the researchers studying children and nature is that children's access to nature is rapidly diminishing (e.g., Kahn, 2002; Kellert, 2002; Pyle, 2002; Rivkin, 2000). Not only may there be less nature for children to access, but children's access of what remains may be increasingly sporadic.

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... Lingkungan alam merupakan literatur yang penting untuk menumbuh kembangkan kemampuan dan kecerdasan anak. Menghabiskan waktu di ruang-ruang alami bagi anak dapat meningkatkan kebugaran dan kemampuan seseorang untuk berkonsentrasi (Taylor & Kuo, 2006). Ini juga telah dibuktikan untuk mengenali diri, perasaan tenang, pengembangan sensorik, kemampuan kognitif dan kreativitas. ...
... Penegasan pendapat tersebut juga dinyatakan oleh (Taylor & Kuo, 2006) bahwa sejak usia dini kecerdasan naturalis sangat dibutuhkan bagi setiap orang. Kecerdasan ini berperan penting dalam menjaga dan memelihara naluri setiap manusia untuk dapat hidup dengan nyaman dalam tananan kehidupan yang seutuhnya. ...
... Pembelajaran yang digunakan untuk mengembangkan kecerdasan naturalis ini seharusnya dilakukan di luar ruangan agar anak secara bebas dapat bereksplorasi (Daniati, 2019). Taylor & Kuo (2006) berpendapat bahwa desain lingkungan ini memiliki peran penting dalam perkembangan mereka. Pembelajaran anak usia dini pada dasarnya menerapkan esensi bermain. ...
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Naturalist and kinestetic Intelligence in Early childhood become the main parameters in the stages of growth and development. This Intelligence becomes a strong foundation in the future in achieving self-success in the industrial era 4.0. In guarding the growth and development of early childhood, Sekolah Alam was an solutions to prpare for the golden generation in the future. Program evaluation carried out with the CIPP (Context Input Process Poduct) model approach aim to measures the achievement of the implementation of the organizing and outcome program for the students. The result showed that the implementation of the program was in the very good category 88,9% and outcome 87,5% student achievied the curriculum target, so it can be concluded that the Sekolah Alam curriculum was succesfully implemented to build the naturalist and kinesthetic intelligence.
... We argue that existing reviews concerning children, nature and health have tended to lump together diverse types of interventionseverything from accessibility to nature over passive exposure to natural environments and elements to engagement with natural environments (Faber Taylor and Kuo, 2006) -or focused narrowly on specific types of health outcomes (Tillmann et al., 2018). While other reviews have been highly informative, they have been narrative in their review approach (McCurdy et al., 2010;Muñoz, 2009) and thereby perhaps not exhaustive or without systematic assessments of risk of bias or the quality of the evidence (Faber Taylor and Kuo, 2006;Holland et al., 2018;McCurdy et al., 2010;Muñoz, 2009). ...
... We argue that existing reviews concerning children, nature and health have tended to lump together diverse types of interventionseverything from accessibility to nature over passive exposure to natural environments and elements to engagement with natural environments (Faber Taylor and Kuo, 2006) -or focused narrowly on specific types of health outcomes (Tillmann et al., 2018). While other reviews have been highly informative, they have been narrative in their review approach (McCurdy et al., 2010;Muñoz, 2009) and thereby perhaps not exhaustive or without systematic assessments of risk of bias or the quality of the evidence (Faber Taylor and Kuo, 2006;Holland et al., 2018;McCurdy et al., 2010;Muñoz, 2009). To our knowledge, Tillmann et al. (2018) were the first to provide a comprehensive child-focused systematic review and quality assessment. ...
... This review presents a comprehensive overview of the research concerning children, nature and mental, physical and social health, combined with an evaluation of the quality of the research at a study and outcome level. Previous reviews provided much needed insights into studied relationships between children, nature and health, but compiled various types of designs, interventions, and/or outcomes (Faber Taylor and Kuo, 2006;Holland et al., 2018;McCurdy et al., 2010;Muñoz, 2009;Tillmann et al., 2018). Although we focused exclusively on immersive nature-experience and distinguished between types of both designs and outcomes, the research was spread across diverse intervention characteristics (e.g. ...
Article
In this systematic review, we summarised and evaluated the evidence for benefits of immersive nature-experience on children and adolescents' mental, physical and social health. An electronic search was performed for English language articles published between January 2004 and May 2017. Data were extracted from 84 publications that met the inclusion criteria. Study quality was assessed for a subset of the studies, i.e. controlled between- and within-subject studies, using a systematic assessment scheme, and the quality of the evidence was reviewed at an outcome level. Across heterogeneous types of immersive nature-experience, there was conditional support for benefits on self-esteem, self-efficacy, resilience and academic and cognitive performance. Correlational research evidenced higher levels of physical activity in natural environments than comparison conditions. Benefits for outcomes such as self-concept, problem solving, and mood were more inconclusive. In addition, social skill-oriented and behavioural indicators were improved, although the categories comprised different outcomes. Risk of bias, insufficient sampling methods and unsuited comparison groups were common study limitations.
... Increased contact with nature has been shown to improve mental well-being, which in turn promotes a child's positive physical development (Faber Taylor & Kuo, 2006;Hillman, Erickson, & Kramer, 2008). Research indicates that children with conditions such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), schizophrenia, Special Educational Needs, and autism specifically benefit from contact with the natural world (Faber Taylor & Kuo, 2009;Faber Taylor, Kuo, & Sullivan, 2001;Kuo & Faber Taylor, 2004;von Benzon, Makuch, & Makuch, 2008). ...
... Research has led to a growing body of evidence (Kellert, 2005;Strife & Downey, 2009) that access to "green space" can give children "myriad cognitive, emotional, and physical benefits, such as increased ability to concentrate, improved academic performance, reduced stress and aggression levels, and reduced risk of obesity" (Strife & Downey, 2009, p. 100). The link between physical activity and mental well-being has been welldocumented (Dresner & Gill, 1994;Faber et al., 2006;Hillman et al., 2008;Lieberman & Hoody, 1998;Louv, 2007;Pretty, Peacock, Sellens, & Griffin, 2005). ...
... In addition to further research on the key issues related to engage children in science projects, there is a need to develop and maintain a library or compendium of best practice guidance specific to ensuring safety and rights protections of child citizen scientists. Studies show that access to green areas plays a major role in developing a child's cognitive and social capacities (Faber, Wiley, Kuo, & Sullivan, 1998;Faber et al., 2006) and that access to neighborhood green spaces may promote emotional well-being in poor urban children in early childhood, yet there is a need for further research and efforts to ensure safety, particularly in inner-city and urban areas (Flouri, Midouhas, & Joshi, 2014). While citizen science projects incorporate lay knowledge and understanding, there is still a limitation on the degree to which social and cultural values and perspectives are incorporated in citizen science data (Adger, Barnett, Brown, Marshall, & O'Brien, 2013;Smith, 2011). ...
Article
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This article examines the benefits and challenges of engaging children in environmental citizen science, defined as science conducted by nonspecialists under the direction of professional scientists, to promote social good. Citizen science addresses two central elements of the social good model—environmental justice and inclusion with particular attention to diversity in age, gender, race/ethnicity, and social class in addressing environmental injustice that is more prevalent in underrepresented communities. This article evaluates how participation in citizen science projects focused on the environment (eco-citizen science) benefits the child’s development, contributes to science, and leads to commitment to environmental stewardship and justice as adults. Our work offers a novel contribution to the discourse on social good and social justice through explicitly calling for children to be included in environmental citizen science projects. We examine the benefits and challenges of involving children in scientific projects and discuss implications for policy, practice, and future research.
... Current research highlights early exposure to nature during the early years as an important requirement for healthy child development as much as "good nutrition and adequate sleep" [1]. However, previous research indicated that the benefit of childhood exposure to nature is bidirectional. ...
... All this research highlighted the importance of being in touch with nature during the early childhood years. However, urbanization, lack of green areas and parental concerns about crime and safety increased the time children spend indoors [18], with technological tools such as television, computer or tablets [1,19] and time spend via structured activities. Since, children spend more time in childcare settings than the time they spend in primary or secondary classes, early childhood education has a crucial role to establish previously mentioned bidirectional consequences of nature integration. ...
Article
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Today’s pre-service early childhood educators will become the teachers of next generation young children. To create an environmentally sensitive society, they have a crucial role. It is important to understand how they perceive nature and its integration to teaching practices. In the current study, 26 Turkish pre-service early childhood educators were asked to draw nature and respond three-open ended question; "(1) What is nature? (2) Would you like to integrate nature into your future teaching practices? Why? (3) How would you plan to integrate nature into your future teaching practices?" Written answers to these questions and pre-service early childhood teachers’ drawings were analyzed thematically. Findings revealed that pre-service early childhood educator defined nature as "(1) living and non-living; (2) source and (3) system” and their drawings included “flora, atmospheric features, fauna, geographical features and human-made stuff”, respectively. All participants revealed that they would like to integrate nature into their future teaching practices and mostly given reason for nature integration was increasing children’s environmental awareness. More than half of the participants reported that they would integrate nature into their future teaching practices via outdoor activities, it is followed by science and indoor activities. Through critically evaluating these findings, suggestions were presented for teacher training programs and future researchers.
... In addition, measures derived from a mobile electroencephalographic (EEG) headset indicate that when people move from built urban streets into urban green space, they experience real-time drops in frustration, engagement, and excitement and an increase in serenity and meditative calm reported by Aspinall et al. 3 . Nature-health connections across the life span and social groups: indicates that unstructured outdoor activities in natural areas may improve children"s health by increasing physical activity, reducing stress and reducing symptoms of attention disorders revealed by Faber et al. 31 and Mc Curdy et al.. Children show higher levels of physical activity outdoors versus indoors, whether outdoor play areas are built or natural; however, children with access to safe green spaces, park playgrounds, and recreational facilities are more likely to be physically active and have a healthy weight than those who lack these resources as reported by Potwarka et al. 86 . Among low-income children, higher levels of neighborhood greenness are associated with a more stable body mass index as reported Bell et al. 5 . ...
... Play in natural areas in childhood is associated with seeking natural environments for restoration and recreation in adulthood and with stewardship behaviors to protect the environment as reported by Ward-Thompson et al. 110 Several studies spanning the preschool years, middle childhood and adolescence associate green views or activity in green spaces with more focussed attention, better coping with stressful life events, better moods, higher academic achievement as demonstrated by Martensson et al. 72 and Matsuoka et al. 74 . Among children diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, reduced symptoms were reported by Day 25 , Faber et al. 31 , Mc Curdy et al. and Ward-Thompson et al. 110 . Children have lower levels of asthma when they live in neighborhoods with more trees as revealed by Lovasi et al. 68 . ...
... Exposure to natural outdoor spaces not only enhances a child's physical and mental well-being (Maynard, Waters & Clement, 2013) but also encourages children's imaginary play, independence, creativity and problem-solving skills, as well as engendering a deeper appreciation for nature and empathy and positive perspectives towards the environment (Kellert, 2005;Lester & Maudsley, 2006;Wilson, 2012). Natural spaces affect a child's knowledge transfer and attention functions (Bengtsson & Grahn, 2014;Taylor & Kuo, 2006), as explained by the Attention Restoration Theory (ART; Kaplan & Kaplan, 1989). According to ART, two types of human attention-directed attention and soft fascination-interact with each other. ...
... It may facilitate restoration and recovery from directed attention fatigue without overwhelming the attentional system (Bengtson & Grahn, 2014). Further, research has shown that outdoor education programmes that encourage soft fascination in a natural settings result in children who are able to more accurately interpret educational messages received from their educators and the environment and who have higher academic achievement and grades than those exposed merely to indoor classroom curricula (Basile, 2000;Taylor & Kuo, 2006). ...
Article
Early childhood environmental education focusses on expanding children’s bio-affinity, developing their environmental attitudes and encouraging them to behave in a more environmentally friendly manner. One example of the educational method that is based on high-quality practices of both early childhood education and environmental education is the Reggio-Emilia pedagogical approach, which provides children with various nature-related experiences. This study examines the frequency and variety of indoor and outdoor nature experiences for children and the preschool teachers’ educational approaches and goals for children’s development in nature in two Reggio-Emilia preschools located in Halifax, Canada. To do this, first-hand observations and semi-structured teacher interviews were used. Results suggest that the Reggio-Emilia curriculum followed at the preschools provided various opportunities for children to be exposed to nature. However, the teachers have emphasized more on anthropocentric than nature-related educational goals.
... A concern regarding children's (dis)connection and the implications for environmental preservation goes beyond environmental education to disciplines that include child development, child psychology and sustainability development debates (Kaplan, 1995, Faber Taylor and Kuo, 2006, Hume and Barry, 2014. Unregulated play outdoors is considered as integral in developing a connection but also expanding children's imagination, sense of creativity, vocabulary and language development (Wenner, 2009, p. 4). ...
... However, the hypothesis assumes a disconnection exists based on a particular interpretation of what a connection ought to be. The scientific perspective does not question to what extent people are disconnected and it must 'extend beyond its genetic base' to include the influence of social and cultural factors in shaping people's relationship with the natural world (Kahn, 1997, p. 20 (Bögeholz, 2006, Chawla, 1998a, Faber Taylor and Kuo, 2006, Lindemann-Matthies, 2005, environmental awareness (Witt and Kimple, 2008) and the implications of science and technology as a cause and solution to environmental problems (Kim, 2011). Environmental education seeks to re-establish an empathetic bond which it argues is fundamental in the development of sustainable environmental behaviours. ...
Thesis
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Ambiguity exists between environmental education and other types of education such as education for sustainable development (ESD) and Sustainable Education (SE) and a clear understanding as to its aims and objectives remains elusive. Considering the wide-ranging scope of global environmental destruction and the implications for social, cultural, political and economic development, environmental education carries both high expectations and levels of responsibility. However, there are questions to be asked regarding these expectations as recent criticisms suggest that environmental education has failed to halt environmental degradation (Saylan and Blumstein, 2011).There are real gaps and problems emerging not because all current approaches have failed but because research does not acknowledge that there are different approaches to environmental education and that different people and interested parties view the role and content of environmental education very differently. The research study critically examined the status of environmental education in Ireland to establish whether, and to what extent, this type of education (re)connects children with the natural world. Opportunities for informal ways of learning about the natural world through unstructured, experiential outdoor play for children have significantly diminished. Such educational opportunities are replaced by more formal approaches to environmental education, which is now firmly embedded within the mainstream primary education system. The research provides an in-depth analysis based on critical and reflective interpretations of environmental education and its position within the primary school environment, while also reflecting on the modernisation processes within society that have contributed to and driven the formalisation of environmental education overall. In doing so, it addresses a research gap by mapping the evolution of environmental education in Ireland and the influences of wider societal, historical, and political developments on its (in)effectiveness.
... Unfortunately, children in contemporary world spend most of their time either structured after school activities taking place indoors or still and passive activities across the screen (Faber-Taylor, & Kuo, 2006;Gray, 2011;Kemple, Oh, Kenney, & Smith-Bonahue, 2016;Louv, 2005;). Pergam and Zaradic (2006) argue that in today's world, where technology prevents children from spending time in nature, the biophilic tendencies triggered by the discovery of natural world have been replaced by the videophile, which has emerged with the attractiveness of electronic media tools. ...
... Urbanization due to rapid population growth is another factor, which negatively affect children's affinity toward nature (Faber-Taylor, & Kuo, 2006). As a result of urbanization, green areas where children can interact with nature have become mostly maintained areas with low biodiversity (Turner, Nakamura, & Dinetti, 2004). ...
Article
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This current study explores 48-60-month-old preschool children's biophilic tendencies by explaining their reasons. The sample of the study consisted of 116 preschool children selected from four public preschools located in Mersin, Turkey. Children's Biophilia Measure exploring young children's levels of affinity toward nature was used as a data collecting material. The findings revealed that the frequencies of young children's biophilic tendencies were much more than their non-biophilic tendencies. The effect of culture, including parental allowance and restriction, was the most striking factor influencing children's biophilic or non-biophilic tendencies. The other factors affecting children's tendencies were affordances of the natural outdoor settings for children's play, safety hazards outdoors, having fun/feeling enjoyment during nature play, attractiveness/unattractiveness of a natural stimuli, curiosity, and previous experiences in natural environment. The finding of this research suggested that there is a need for accessible natural settings to ensure young children's regular and direct interactions with nature; which in turn, strengthen their affinity toward nature.
... Nature school may become part of formal education of all levels [9], one of which is early childhood education level. According to [10], many people are currently interested in outdoor learning, since it does not only develop students' cognitive skills, but also their physical and psychological skills [11]. Value education must be done from an early age as the most fundamental phase in human life. ...
... Recent empirical evidence indicates that a connection with nature contributes positively to children's constructive development. Related research has involved studies in children's health and well-being (Bell et al., 2008;Cleland et al., 2008;Mayer et al., 2008;McCracken et al., 2016;Taylor and Kuo, 2006), approaches for the psychological phenomenon "environmental generation amnesia" (Chipeniuk, 1995;Kahn, 2002;Laaksoharju and Rappe, 2017), and children's behaviour and attitude informing environmental moral constructions for sustainability (Cheng and Monroe, 2012;Collado et al., 2013;Frantz and Mayer, 2014). Considering the positive effects of the natural involvement on children, the creation of appropriate environments within which children can be exposed to nature is essential. ...
Article
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Purpose – Proximity to nature is essential to a child’s development. Well-designed educational environments are crucial to supporting this proximity, particularly in the early years of schooling. The purpose of this paper is to measure children’s experiences of nature within three primary school spaces at various locations in Glasgow, Scotland. The methodology for measuring children’s visual and non-visual sensory experiences is developed to evaluate the connection between naturalness values and spatial environmental qualities across varying “Child–Nature–Distance” ranges. Design/methodology/approach – The approach associates children’s multiple layers of sensory modalities with particular attributes of the spatial environment within primary schools to determine the level of naturalness that children experience, in both internal and external spaces. Findings – The study finds that children’s experiences are significantly influenced by factors relating to urban setting, built environment master planning, architectural features and interior design. Research limitations/implications – Apart from primary school architecture for children, this methodology could be fully developed to the comprehensive human–nature relationship under the impacts of physical features and societal of other diversified environments in a future study. However, the offering reasonable primary school architecture for a proper children’s multi-sensorial experience with natural environment cannot thoroughly established with a quantitative aspect by the present study only. More qualitative research is recommended to examine the process of altering from “cause” to “perceived” nature of users’ cognitions, attitudes and behaviours within the exposure proximity to nature. Practical implications – The methodology for measuring visual and non-visual sensorial experiences of nature, and its application to children’s learning and leisure spaces within primary school architecture could offer a tool for assessing current schools, and evaluating future design proposals for new schools. Originality/value – The authors argue that the applicationof this method can support design decision making for refurbishing schools at the micro level, and in planning urban development involving proposals for new schools at the macro level. Keywords Primary schools, Permeability, Naturalness value, Nature syntax, Sensorial experience, Spatial environment
... The benefits of nature to children's health are increasingly documented, with access to greenspaces and "close-to-home" nature supporting increased attention, reduced stress, increased physical activity, and improved cognitive function (Chawla, 2015;Faber Taylor & Kuo, 2006;Faber Taylor, Kuo, & Sullivan, 2001;McCurdy, Winterbottom, Mehta, & Roberts, 2010;Wells, 2000;Wolch et al., 2011). In addition, children benefit from play in nature for its affordances of imaginative and creative play (Änggård, 2010) and increased social interactions (Chawla, 2015). ...
Article
Nature school settings provide opportunities for experiential learning across many developmental domains. This study focused on an afterschool nature program in Santa Cruz County, California, which serves kindergarten through fifth grade students. The study was designed as a pilot to both learn about the program’s effectiveness, and to test the feasibility and effectiveness of methods for sustained program evaluation. The study showed positive and statistically significant results for most developmental areas and that teachers considered most effective those lessons that engage multiple developmental domains. Future program assessments should examine the number of developmental domains lessons engage and should partner with a local university or expert for periodic in-depth evaluation.
... Non è sempre stato così: i processi di progressiva artificializzazione del territorio, il sopravvenire di nuovi pericoli (e la mutata percezione degli stessi), il modificarsi dei ritmi e degli stili di vita hanno progressivamente ridotto per i bambini, e non solo per loro, le opportunità di contatto con la natura da sempre insostituibile compagna di giochi, avventure e scoperte. Alcune conseguenze le abbiamo già sotto gli occhi e ci vengono raccontate da numerose ricerche internazionali che ci descrivono un'infanzia cagionevole, obesa e stressata, preda di emicranie, ansie, e gravi problemi comportamentali come, tra le altre, le sindromi da deficit di attenzione (Faber Taylor, Kuo, 2006). ...
Chapter
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Gli ultimi anni del ventesimo secolo sono stati caratterizzati da un aumento di incertezza, instabilità e rapidi cambiamenti dovuti alle conseguenze dello sviluppo che continua a ignorare e a marginalizzare i sistemi naturali. Sono proprio i bambini, i protagonisti del futuro che dovranno sobbarcarsi le conseguenze derivanti dalle decisioni politiche, sociali e ambientali attuali che quotidianamente si traducono in azioni attuate o evitate. Uno dei più importanti compiti della società dovrebbe essere quello di comunicare ai bambini, attraverso i nostri atteggiamenti, quei valori, quelle conoscenze e quelle competenze necessarie a ripensare e modificare gli attuali modelli di pensiero e azione per garantire salute, giustizia e sostenibilità per tutti. L’educazione ambientale – o educazione alla sostenibilità nella prospettiva attuale - è di vitale importanza per percorrere questa via come ci ricordano gli obiettivi dello sviluppo sostenibile che ci siamo impegnati a raggiungere entro il 2030 (Unesco, 2017). Per farlo, i bambini hanno bisogno di noi adulti - genitori, insegnanti e della più vasta comunità - per imparare a scorgere soluzioni sostenibili, per orientare le azioni necessarie al cambiamento e riconoscere l'importanza vitale del nostro 'posto nella natura’ (Davies, 2009). Ma più di tutto i bambini hanno bisogno di esperienze, bisogno di vivere la natura e invece, in controtendenza, oggi vengono offerte loro ben poche possibilità di trascorrere del tempo in autonomia all’aperto.
... The researchers Faber & Kuo in (2004) stated that the excessive use of screen time have demerits in daily life styles like health and behavioral issues etc. Those children who engaged in screen time are over weighted as compare to those who don't use it (Laurson et al., 2008). ...
... Modern children are known to connect to their environment holistically, with all their senses, and to highly value variable places with vegetation, hills and meadows and the presence of water (Alerby, 2000;Faber Taylor et al., 1998Faber Taylor & Kuo, 2006;, Korpela et al., 2002Laaksoharju & Rappe, 2010;Min & Lee, 2006;Wells, 2000). Children tend to prefer places in which they are able to play and perform different types of activities without excessive external control (e.g. ...
Thesis
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Nature contact has been acknowledged as beneficial for children’s development and wellbeing, as it is for all humans. At the same time, children’s free play in nature and independent mobility, ‘free-ranging,’ has been declining in Western societies in recent decades. One solution to this dilemma, nature clubs and camps with the aim of introducing and promoting children’s nature contact, are becoming increasingly common. Nature programmes aim to (re-)connect children and nature through educational goals. One example of such a place, the children's garden, is becoming increasingly recognized as a place where adults hope that children will learn various skills and subjects, while simultaneously hoping the children will improve their relationship with nature. Despite the known educational and health benefits of gardening, children's interactions with the actual physical elements of a place are less understood and examined. By recognizing more factors that affect children's process in forming a close, durable and meaningful relationship with natural places like the garden, adults become more capable of appropriately supporting children. The aim of this research was to unravel how children connect with such a natural space, the garden by looking at the place-specific affordances. The concept of affordances is the key to this study; it refers to the physical elements of the environment that reveal opportunities for interaction once they have been perceived. The research comprises two parts. The first phase of the study evaluated Finnish primary school children’s relationship with plants and nature, by comparing rural/suburban and boys’/girls’ attitudes and knowledge about plants and favourite places. The comparison was conducted through a survey of 76 children. Using mixed methods, the statistical analysis included paired cross tabulation, and chi-square-tests (χ2) to measure the significance of differences among the groups rural/suburban, and boys/girls. The second part of the study consisted of qualitative fieldwork with ethnographic participant and non-participant observations throughout summers 2008-2010 in the Kumpula School Garden in Helsinki. In order to study the phenomenon of how children make their connection to nature through place-based affordances, the study leans on an interpretivist ontology that views reality as understandable by observing actors within their social context. To assess the child-centred potential of a garden environment for building connection to nature, I examined the affordances in a garden camp context, focusing on 6- to 11-year-old, inexperienced children (~40 participants for each year of the study). The long-term fieldwork generated outstanding data: field reports and notes, videos, photographs and children’s drawings and interviews. Grounded theory method (GT) was applied in studies II and III. Analysis followed the GT analytical procedure of open coding, selective coding and theoretical coding. In GT, the initial basis for the study is to understand a particular social phenomenon in order to build a theory upon it. Inductive and repeated analysis focused on the children’s actions in combination with the actual natural affordances. In formulating the theory, the findings of garden affordances for children were evaluated relatively with these theoretical concepts: environmental child-friendliness (ECF), the zone of proximal development (ZPD), behavioural insideness, and connectedness to nature/place. Firstly, the results in study I showed that the relationship between nature and greenery differs according to residence and gender. The children living in a rural area (N= 34 in Paltamo, Kainuu) were more likely to mention natural places as their favourites than did their suburban counterparts (N=42 in Helsinki). Illustratively, rural children claimed to know the forest trees by name more often than the suburban children. In addition, the rural children understood mankind as part of nature, whereas suburban children were more likely to disagree with this claim. The group differences reported were statistically significant. The girls were, in general, more interested in plants than the boys. Alarmingly, 36% of the boys did not understand that plants are essential for human life. The girls understood better that plants are vital for human life. Second, results in the following studies II and III in the garden camp context showed that the versatility of affordances offered plenty of opportunities for building the nature-child relationship. The garden fostered social interactions by offering plentiful materials in a varied space. The variability and abundance of affordances boosted ZPD through scaffolding – learning together and from more experienced peers while using the affordances proved noteworthy in learning and passing on new skills. The essential factors that had a contributory role in the process of becoming empowered players within the setting were: sufficient time, the possibility of child-directed play and a space with a versatility of affordances available for use. With these factors, the garden affordances brought about 14 various play types. Trees were the most significant elements of the research site in fostering a relationship with nature. They answered children’s situational and individual needs by offering ideas, challenge, materials, and space for play. Wooden material affordances offered props and loose parts for different play needs. The trees possessed qualities equivalent to children’s needs for building self-confidence and emotion regulation, competence and belonging, creativity, excitement and affection. Climbing trees offered the children the challenge of handling risks autonomously. Consequently, trees serve well as indicator plants in assessing the children's connectedness to place. The children’s whole process of connecting with the place was captured, and the actual phases of this evolving connectedness are presented. Along with the concept of behavioural insideness that represents the behaviour of a child when she/he feels connected with a place, this study identifies the preceding phases: the initial phase as outsiders, then searchers, and finally the proactive insiders. In the first phase, as an outsider, the still insecure children looked for comfort around the vegetation. Tall trees were visibly inviting, offering an asylum or a shield before the children gained the confidence to start the searcher phase. The searchers, as the name implies, were constantly exploring their surroundings and the phase also involved showing off one's skills to make friends. For the searchers, the garden affordances offered versatility for choosing suitable materials and space. The biodiversity of the place was key to satisfying children’s needs by offering suitable affordances; it successfully fostered the development of behavioural insideness within two weeks, and this ultimately led to a strong connectedness to place. In the last phase as insiders, long-term play utilizing a wide variety of natural materials was typical, and the children behaved both spontaneously and imaginatively. The adults and peers had an effect on the children's connection process and to the actualization of garden's affordances, affecting the ECF. Impetus, which triggered the use of affordances, was either personal or situational. Some of the obstacles came from personal shortcomings, such as lack of interest or experience, or from fears and/or dislikes. Common obstacles from adults included a desire to move forward with the planned programme or an appeal to safety and rules. The development of a grounded theory, the IAO theory, outlines possible combinations of place-based impetuses, obstacles and affordances, all of which have an effect on the children’s process of connecting to place. The theory is an equation, which makes it user-friendly in assessing and planning children’s nature-based activities and environments. In addition, the theoretical framework of ‘Affordances channel connectedness to place’ opens up the external and internal preconditions necessary for children before they start utilizing the existing affordances, their three-phased process towards connectedness to place, and the manifestations of the final stage, behavioural insideness. Finally, a child-centred implication, PIT (Place-based, Intention and Time), provides guidelines to help adults to plan and conduct place-based, situational-sensitive nature activities for children. With these three GT outcomes, children’s connection to nature can be well supported.
... This situation as a conclusion, starts a chain reaction which leads people to become estranged to nature. Increase in obesity, vitamin D deficiency, hyperactivity and attention deficit disorder occurs in children as other results (Faber et al., 2006). Another effect of being diverged from nature on children is the way they become afraid of and uninterested in nature (Berg & Medrich, 1980). ...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose In recent years, design approaches that offer sustainable solutions have been preferred widely. Although these sustainable design approaches provide solutions for physical context, they are not able to solve the problems on psychological side of this situation. These psychological problems have been observed both on adults and children. This research aims to examine the benefits of enabling children who spend their time in built environments to experience nature through Biophilic Design. Methodology 140 children between the ages of 3 and 5 from two different pre-school institutions participated in the study. Participation criteria were to be volunteer, a pre-school student, and accessible. The pictures drawn by the children in reply to the question ‘What is nature like?’ were analysed by using content analysis and cognitive mapping method. The data obtained from the study were analysed and the results were presented as median, mean values ± standard deviations (SD), numbers, and percentages. The compliance of the total score to normal distribution according to age and gender independent variables was examined by the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test. Non-parametric tests were used in the analysis, p
... Despite all the difficulties encountered, there are studies that require teachers to incorporate nature and environmental studies into their curricula. In these studies, it was determined that the time spent in nature improves the stress levels and creative skills of children [98,99], positively affects their interest in science both at the moment and in the future [100][101][102][103], contributes to the welfare and development of children [104], increases environmental awareness [105,106], supports motor development [107], ensures gaining and maintaining abstract reasoning [108,109], contributes to scientific knowledge, scientific thinking process and word development [49,107,[110][111][112]. In their study, Hine, Pretty and Barton [113] determined that the level of stress decreases, the mood improves, psychological wellbeing increases, attention and concentration rise to higher levels as a result of the contact with nature. ...
Article
Full-text available
This research is a qualitative study to determine the opinions of preschool teachers and pre-service teachers on environmental education and environmental awareness for sustainable development. The phenomenology approach, which focuses on individuals’ own experiences and the meaning of a phenomenon, was used in this direction. The study group of the research consisted of 68 preschool teachers and 72 pre-service preschool teachers. In the study, a semi-structured interview form consisting of open-ended questions was used as a data collection tool. The content analysis technique was used in the analysis of the data obtained from the interview form. According to the research results, it can be said that pre-service teachers have more theoretical knowledge than teachers and teachers have more practical knowledge than pre-service teachers. This can be explained by the fact that the knowledge that pre-service teachers obtain at university is quite new, they spend more limited time with children within the scope of applied courses, teachers communicate much more with children every day and they are more distant from theoretical knowledge. Furthermore, it can be said that teachers and pre-service teachers are sensitive towards environmental problems, interested in environmental education, willing and open to development.
... Vyhodnocování výsledků dobrodružných venkovních programů v průběhu několika desetiletí přineslo řadu důkazů, že tyto programy u svých účastníků zvyšují osobní autonomii, zlepšují sebepojetí, posilují schopnost rozhodovat se a provádět akce a rozvíjí dovednost navazovat a udržovat mezilidské vztahy. 24, 36,68,94,169 Ačkoli naprostá většina dobrodružných venkovních programů prokázala své dopady na rozvoj personálních a sociálních dovedností svých účastníků, ukázalo se, že některé z programů měly poměrně malý účinek. Otevřeně řečeno, mizerné programy přinášely mizerné výsledky. ...
Book
Full-text available
Publikace ukazuje, jak učení venku v přírodě přináší uspokojení základních psychologických potřeb dětí, vyšší vnitřní motivací k učení, zlepšené chování ve škole a lepší vzdělávací výsledky napříč předměty. Popisuje také hlavní překážky, které učení venku brání, představuje inspirativní příklady ze zahraničí a shrnuje doporučení, co vše bychom měli udělat, aby se učení venku v přírodě v naší zemi mohlo více rozšířit. Kniha čerpá z více než 200 výzkumů a dalších titulů odborné literatury z různých koutů světa a představuje tak dosud největší a nejkomplexnější práci o tématu učení venku v českém jazyce. Navzdory svému odbornému zaměření je psána srozumitelně a čtivě. Text doprovází přitažlivé fotografie a grafika. Díky tomu je kniha přístupná nejenom teoretikům ve vzdělávání, ale také učitelům a ředitelům, vychovatelům, úředníkům a rodičům.
... In regard to free outside play, which is defined as intrinsically motivated and not provoked by instrumental goal-directed behavior [113], it was shown by Taylor and Kuo [114] that, after extended outside play, even 9 months later, significantly greater improvement in various measures of PF and MC were diagnosed. Thus, it is not surprising that, in our study, outside play activities were also related to the test performances of the children. ...
Article
Full-text available
(1) Background: Children with greater physical activity (PA) may show a higher physical fitness (PF) and motor competence (MC) compared to peers with less PA. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), PF, and MC in 8- to 9-year old children in Germany and China. MVPA was differentiated into five PA settings: family sport, club training, school sport, leisure sport, and outside play. (2) Methods: This longitudinal study comprised N = 577 children (n = 311 girls, n = 266 boys) who were studied over a one-year period. Each child’s PF and MC was determined using sports motor tests. The children’s PAs were measured using a questionnaire. (3) Results: The children’s PA was positively associated with PF and MC. The MVPA-settings: family sport, leisure sport, outside play, school, and club sport, explained between 18 and 23 percent of the variance in selected PF and MC characteristics in a multivariate linear regression analysis. (4) Conclusions: An increase in the children’s MVPA might be an appropriate aim in the school sport in Germany as well as in the club sport system in China. Furthermore, family sport should be enhanced in Germany and outside play activities in China, respectively.
... This study underlines the role of residential green space as a source of childhood nature contact and adult nature contact, nature connectedness, and mental wellbeing. There is a rising demand for enabling children to contact nature and build emotional connections with nature [75]. This demand has begun to receive more attention in China, as China has been urbanizing faster than other countries in the past decade [76]. ...
Article
Full-text available
Residential green spaces, arguably the most accessible type of urban green space, may have lasting impacts on children and even change their lives later in adulthood. However, the potential pathways from childhood residential green space to adulthood mental wellbeing are not well understood. Therefore, we conducted a questionnaire survey among Chinese adults (N = 770) in September 2021 to capture data on subjective measures of residential green space and nature contact during childhood, and nature connectedness, nature contact, and mental wellbeing during adult-hood. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was employed to examine theoretical pathways between childhood residential green space and adult mental wellbeing. The results suggest that childhood residential green space positively predicts childhood nature contact and also has direct and indirect positive impacts on nature contact, nature connectedness, and mental wellbeing during adulthood. These findings advance understanding of the long-term impacts of childhood residential green space. Policymakers are advised to prioritize residential greening as well as other recreational facilities for children when planning health-promoting environments in urban spaces. Due to limitations in our study design, we also advise future studies to reexamine and extend the framework documented here.
... In contrast, the urban children are more motivated to play in green and abandoned spaces (36%), nearby forest (26%) and terrace home garden (23%) see Figure 2. It suggests that the urban children are attracted to play with naturalness that offered fascinating and temporary being away from parent's surveillances (Taylor and Kuo, 2006) rather than play with structured equipments in playground. However, 23% were actively played in terrace home garden is due to many social factor that forced them confined in terrace home garden such as parental concern of stranger in neighbourhood garden, an early year of middle childhood children, gender and many more (Walsh, 2006). ...
... The researchers Faber & Kuo in (2004) stated that the excessive use of screen time have demerits in daily life styles like health and behavioral issues etc. Those children who engaged in screen time are over weighted as compare to those who don't use it (Laurson et al., 2008). ...
Article
Full-text available
The presence of social media in our daily life gives both its positive and negative impact on communication manners. The study aims to know the effect of excessive screen time on children's development and well-being. Today, all children are using tablets, smart phones and spending hours in front of their even. 2 year children know how to use it, this excessive use causing different problems among children. This study aimed to see the effect of screen time on children's development and well-being. The universe of the present study was mothers of under 10 children sample was selected through convenient sampling. Which consisted of 105 mothers. The findings revealed that excessive screen time is badly affecting children's well-being and development and it causes different mental behavioral issues.
... For example, people who grow up spending free-time in the more-than-human-world, such as green neighbourhoods, at a coast, or regular visits to green spaces, are more likely to take later actions that benefit the environment, such as recycling, buying eco-friendly products, and environmental volunteering (Alcock et al., 2020). Moreover, research indicates that exposure to the morethan-human-world is of importance for physical and psychological health, increasing one's ability to concentrate, improving one's academic performance and reducing one's stress (Faber and Kuo, 2006;Kaplan, 1995;Wells and Evans, 2003). However, our results showed that around one-fourth of participants felt rather indifferent to the more-than-human-world when they grew up. ...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose This paper aims to increase related knowledge across personal, social and ecological dimensions of sustainability and how it can be applied to support transformative learning. Design/methodology/approach The paper provides a reflexive case study of the design, content and impact of a course on eco-justice that integrates relational learning with an equity and justice lens. The reflexive case study provides a critical, exploratory self-assessment, including interviews, group discussions and surveys with key stakeholders and course participants. Findings The results show how relational approaches can support transformative learning for sustainability and provide concrete practices, pathways and recommendations for curricula development that other universities/training institutions could follow or learn from. Originality/value Sustainability research, practice and education generally focuses on structural or systemic factors of transformation (e.g. technology, governance and policy) without due consideration as to how institutions and systems are shaping and shaped by the transformation of personal agency and subjectivity. This presents a vast untapped and under-studied potential for addressing deep leverage points for change by using a relational approach to link personal, societal and ecological transformations for sustainability.
... The potential of natural environments is supported by a growing number of literature reviews that accumulate and discuss the evidence for the developmental and health benefits of contact with nature on children and adolescents (Faber Taylor and Kuo, 2006;Gill, 2014;Holland et al., 2018;McCurdy et al., 2010;Mygind et al., 2019a;Tillmann et al., 2018b). Childhood exposure to nature has also been associated with adult socioemotional function and mental health; for example, through lowered risk of depressive symptoms (Bezold et al., 2018) and psychiatric disorders during adulthood while controlling for socioeconomic factors (Engemann et al., 2019). ...
Article
Full-text available
Background Existing research indicates that spending time in nature is associated with diverse aspects of children’s health and wellbeing. Although fundamental to later life chances and health, no systematic reviews, to our knowledge, have focused specifically on the effects of interaction with nature on socioemotional functioning in childhood. Objectives Amongst children, what is the consistency of associations between the availability of or spending time in nature on socioemotional function and development? Furthermore, which child behaviours and states independently associate with socioemotional function and availability of or spending time in nature, and what is the consistency of associations between these behaviours and states and contact with nature? Data sources Embase, Environment Complete, MEDLINE, and APA PsycINFO. Eligible studies were backward and forward snowball-searched. Study eligibility criteria Studies investigating effects of, or associations between, availability of or interaction with nature on socioemotional or proximal outcomes in children under the age of 12 years were included in this review. Study appraisal and synthesis methods The internal validity of studies investigating socioemotional outcomes were based on assessments of elements of study design, conduct, and reporting to identify potential issues related to confounding or other biases. The number of analyses indicating positive, negative, and non-significant associations between availability or interaction with green space and the outcomes were summed. Results A total of 223 eligible full-texts, of which 43 pertained to socioemotional outcomes and 180 to proximal outcomes, met eligibility criteria. Positive associations between availability of and spending time in green space were found with children’s intra- and interpersonal socioemotional function and development. Proportions of positive findings ranged from 13.9% to 55% across experimental and observational research, exposures, populations, and contexts. Modifying and mediating factors were identified. We found consistent evidence for improved aspects of cognition and, for children over six years, reduced risk of obesity and overweight in association with green space; consistent links between movement behaviours in the experimental, but not observational research; tentative trends suggesting associations with play, motor skills, language, screen time, and communication skills; little evidence for positive associations between green space and mood, physical wellbeing, and stress; some evidence for associations with healthy birth outcomes, and little evidence for direct associations between availability of green space and asthma and allergy prevalence, however, mediation via, for example, air pollution was likely. Limitations We identified few studies without either probable or severe risk of bias in at least one item. Improved study quality may therefore result in different results. Restricting analyses to include only studies considered at low risk of bias indicated similar or slightly lower proportions of positive findings. Risk of bias in proximal outcomes was not assessed. Conclusions The empirical evidence for benefits of availability of and interaction green space for child socioemotional function and development must currently be considered limited. A number of proximal indicators were identified. Systematic review registration number. PROSPERO ID: CRD42019135016.
... More and more scientific studies are highlighting the importance of contact with nature for mental well-being, as Corraliza & Collado (2011) point out. Some of these studies corroborate that simply visualizing scenes from nature or participating in activities within natural environments reduces mental fatigue (Taylor & Kuo, 2006;Wells, 2000). ...
Article
Full-text available
It is a fact that the traditional school model is not in harmony with the new current of Positive Psychology applied to Education, since this states that emotional education, art and respect for children's natural development are pedagogical imperatives for their emotional well-being. According to Steiner's philosophy, Waldorf pedagogy can be considered as a model in this sense: the main objective of this article is to verify this hypothesis and identify the factors that provide this state of school welfare. Methodologically, a case study is proposed which examines the keys to the motivational success of a group of Waldorf students and identifies the factors that promote happiness in that context through observation and compliance with the Subjective Happiness Scale. The results, with an average of 4'96 of SHS Subjective Happiness, confirm the hypothesis, and the research shows that the most representative motivational factors are the artistic-languages-based curriculum and the respect for children's natural development
... The potency of Outdoor Learning is being underpinned by a mounting number of literature reviews that highlight the evidence-based research for the developmental and wellbeing benefits on children and adolescents [28,[69][70][71][72][73][74]. Notwithstanding this trend, the effect of Outdoor Learning on academic metrics remains under-researched [75]. ...
Article
Full-text available
Outdoor Learning in natural environments is a burgeoning approach in the educational sector. However, the evidence-base of research has not kept pace with teacher perceptions and increased practitioner usage. Anecdotal evidence and formal research suggest the significant health and wellbeing benefits of nature connection. Offering low-cost, non-invasive pedagogical solutions to public health challenges—particularly around mental health, wellbeing, physical literacy, and increasing physical activity–the pedagogical benefits of Outdoor Learning are yet to be fully enunciated. The proposed systematic review will search for studies across eight academic databases which measure the academic and socio-emotional benefits of Outdoor Learning, with a focus on school-aged educational settings. Using the inclusion criteria set out in this paper (and registered with PROSPERO: CRD42020153171), relevant studies will be identified then summarised to provide a synthesis of the current literature on Outdoor Learning. The goal of this review is to document the widespread international investigation into Outdoor Learning and its associated benefits for development, wellbeing, and personal growth. The systematic review will provide insights for teacher-training institutions, educational policy makers, and frontline teachers to improve the learning experiences of future students.
... Some researchers have claimed the crucial role of nature in children's well-being. Faber Taylor and Kuo (2006) has argued that outdoor activities in natural environments improve children's social and cognitive development and Kellert (2005) has claimed natural environment increases children's stimulation and as a result, encourage them to engage in more learning opportunities. Nature is now considered as a broad classroom which provides opportunities for children for better development in social, cognitive and learning skills (Fitzgerald, 2018), and therefore the number of kindergartens and childcare that adopt natureoriented education is increasing. ...
Conference Paper
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In recent years, Early Childhood Education has been widely influenced by ecological approaches and sustainable design. The reason for that could be named as the increasing number of studies which claim to invest on promoted awareness of young children towards the natural environment which has roots early childhood education. Environmental education in early childhood is a holistic concept that encompasses knowledge of the natural world parallel with developing children’s emotions, dispositions, and skills. The current study is tracking the architectural features of a newly built ecological kindergarten in Antalya, Turkey that has adopted environmental education to explore its compatibility with the NAAEE guideline for Early Childhood Environmental Education Programs. The methodological approach of this study contains a detail site-analysis, physical environment of the so-called ecological kindergarten, as well as the profound questionnaires for teachers and parents to share their ideas related to the weaknesses and strengths of the physical environment of the kindergarten. Comparing the data collected from the questionnaires with the one from the observation survey, this study concludes that the outdoor space of the kindergarten is more compatible with environmental education. While the architectural features of the ecological kindergarten do not meet the approved requirements of an ecological design, this design approach promotes a noticeable development on the environmental education of the neighborhood and its surrounding.
... In regard to free outside play, which is defined as intrinsically motivated and not provoked by instrumental goal-directed behavior [113], it was shown by Taylor and Kuo [114] that, after extended outside play, even 9 months later, significantly greater improvement in various measures of PF and MC were diagnosed. Thus, it is not surprising that, in our study, outside play activities were also related to the test performances of the children. ...
Article
Full-text available
(1) Background: Children with greater physical activity (PA) may show a higher physical fitness (PF) and motor competence (MC) compared to peers with less PA. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), PF, and MC in 8- to 9-year old children in Germany and China. MVPA was differentiated into five PA settings: family sport, club training, school sport, leisure sport, and outside play. (2) Methods: This longitudinal study comprised N = 577 children (n = 311 girls, n = 266 boys) who were studied over a one-year period. Each child’s PF and MC was determined using sports motor tests. The children’s PAs were measured using a questionnaire. (3) Results: The children’s PA was positively associated with PF and MC. The MVPA-settings: family sport, leisure sport, outside play, school, and club sport, explained between 18 and 23 percent of the variance in selected PF and MC characteristics in a multivariate linear regression analysis. (4) Conclusions: An increase in the children’s MVPA might be an appropriate aim in the school sport in Germany as well as in the club sport system in China. Furthermore, family sport should be enhanced in Germany and outside play activities in China, respectively.
... Neighborhood greenspace is a consistent correlate of physical activity in children and adolescents (Roemmich et al., 2006, Floyd et al., 2011, and is associated with a number of other positive physical health outcomes (Maller et al., 2006;McCurdy et al., 2010;Reuben et al., 2020) including development of motor skills (Kabisch et al., 2019). Spending more time in nature through structured and unstructured outdoor activities can also improve children's mental health (Taylor et al., 2006, Taylor andKuo, 2011;McCormick, 2017;Tillmann et al., 2018), emotional well-being (Norwood et al., 2019), and moral and psychosocial development (Kellert, 2005;Ginsburg, 2007;Dowdell et al., 2011;McCormick, 2017). Youth exposure to nature can boost creativity (Chawla, 2015;Williams et al., 2018) and may help to enhance students' academic performance (Browning and Rigolon, 2019). ...
Article
Full-text available
Despite increasing emphasis on youth contact with nature and associated benefits, research has not examined the direct relationship between adolescents' nature-based experiences and holistic measures of positive youth development (PYD). This gap may stem from the lack of interdisciplinary work on nature and PYD. Our study integrates multiple disciplinary perspectives to explore direct associations between time in nature, connection to nature, and the five Cs of PYD (competence, connection, confidence, character, and caring) as well as the “sixth” C of contribution. From 2015 to 2016, we collected data from 587 diverse South Carolina middle school students (57% female, 40% BIPOC) between the ages of 11 and 14 ( M age = 12.9) and living in predominantly low-income communities. OLS regression analyses indicated that across all youth, self-reported connection to nature was a consistent positive correlate of overall PYD and each of the individual Cs. Time in nature was associated with overall PYD and competence. Findings demonstrate significant associations between nature-based experiences and PYD and underscore the importance of ensuring that diverse youth can access and enjoy the developmental benefits of nature and nature-based recreation opportunities.
... On [4]. Furthermore, Faber and Kuo have contributed important research to the understanding of the impact of nature on people's lives, and specifically to the well-being of children [5]. This approach of nature contact of children at schools can be reached through sustainable design. ...
... Contact with nature is systematically related to lessened attention deficit symptoms. For example, parents of ADDs children reported lower symptom severity the greener their children's typical play space, with children better able to focus immediately following outdoor activities (Taylor & Kuo, 2006;Taylor et al., 2001). ...
Article
Full-text available
The paper begins with a literature review that first establishes the concepts of nature and nature experience adhered to throughout. It then moves on to brushstroking the problematic situation today of children's diminishing contact with nature, followed by evidence of the benefits of nature, and consequences if these benefits are no longer available to future generations. The paper further reviewed the status of outdoor and environmental education in Singapore and its place in curriculum, and identified possible gaps. This was followed by an exploratory study that investigates the qualities, knowledge and skills of nine master nature educators (MNEs). In-depth interviews with master nature educators and subsequent qualitative analyses of the data revealed first glimpses into these MNEs' thoughts, beliefs and actions of in their quest to create awareness and appreciation among the public about the local biodiversity and wild habitats. The data from the study gives rise to a proposed model that illustrates how the qualities and practice of MNEs might shape up a specialized nature education curriculum. The paper concludes with highlighting key implications to curriculum development in Singapore and how the proposed model could evolve a pedagogy of nature education. Taking a leaf from master nature educators-towards a pedagogy of nature education (completed in 2017)
... The researchers Faber & Kuo in (2004) stated that the excessive use of screen time have demerits in daily life styles like health and behavioral issues etc. Those children who engaged in screen time are over weighted as compare to those who don't use it (Laurson et al., 2008). ...
Article
Full-text available
The presence of social media in our daily life gives both its positive and negative impact on communication manners. The study aims to know the effect of excessive screen time on children's development and well-being. Today, all children are using tablets, smart phones and spending hours in front of their even. 2 year children know how to use it, this excessive use causing different problems among children. This study aimed to see the effect of screen time on children's development and well-being. The universe of the present study was mothers of under 10 children sample was selected through convenient sampling. Which consisted of 105 mothers. The findings revealed that excessive screen time is badly affecting children's well-being and development and it causes different mental behavioral issues.
... Hands-on environmental education programs can increase problem-solving skills and improve student performance in math and science (Palmer 2002, Bierle and Singletary 2008, Cachelin et al. 2009). These programs can also increase students' sense of place and connection with nature, resulting in long-term educational and emotional benefits as well as increased environmental awareness (Taylor et al. 2006, Kudryavtsev et al. 2012. With some creativity, and the necessary partners and participants, it may also be 1 University of California, Riverside. ...
Article
Full-text available
There is growing evidence that exposure to nature, as opposed to a built environment, is associated with better health. Specifically in children, more exposure to nature seems to be associated with better cognitive, affective, and behavioral self-regulation. Because studies are scattered over different scientific disciplines, it is difficult to create a coherent overview of empirical findings. We therefore conducted two meta-analyses on the effect of exposure to nature on self-regulation of schoolchildren (Mage = 7.84 years; SD = 2.46). Our 3-level meta-analyses showed small, but significant positive overall associations of nature with self-regulation in both correlational (15 studies, r = .10; p < .001) and (quasi-) experimental (16 studies, d = .15; p < .01) studies. Moderation analyses revealed no differential associations based on most sample or study characteristics. However, in correlational studies the type of instrument used to measure exposure to nature (index score of nature vs. parent-reported exposure) significantly moderated the association between nature and self-regulation. Stronger associations were found when exposure to nature was assessed via parent-reports than via an index such as by a normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). Our findings suggest that nature may be a promising tool in stimulating children's self-regulation, and possibly preventing child psychopathology. However, our overview also shows that we are in need of more rigorous experimental studies, using theoretically based conceptualizations of nature, and validated measures of nature and its putative outcomes. Full-text: https://hdl.handle.net/11245.1/f286bb77-4293-49cc-96ee-76d057132268
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The game is a key element of a child’s life, and outdoor activity enables development of creativity, imagination, social network and behavior. Daily outdoor activity increases children's concentration level and enhance cognitive abilities. The “outdoor” technology itself is not new, but for its successful implementation and application as a tool of socialization certain skills and abilities are required from a social worker. The purpose of the article is to reveal the key aspects of the “outdoor” technology and assess the possibility of its use in the current education conditions. The article presents the scientific, methodological and organizational basis of the professional training of specialists in social work using the "outdoor" technology. The article presents the foreign experience of training specialists in working with children and youth using the “outdoor” technology and analyzes the practical application of training for Russian social specialists.
Article
Research shows various benefits of play in terms of children’s development. However, very little investigation has explored play from a lifespan perspective, linking early play experiences to older adulthood. Although some prior research has explored play memories, very little information is available on play memories of older adults, specifically, and perceptions of the importance of play in older adults. Using a lifespan perspective, this study explored the phenomenon of play through stories and memories from interviews with 15 older adults. Major study themes highlight changes between past and present play activity. Implications for practitioners and researchers are presented.
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Στο άρθρο αυτό επιχειρείται η προσέγγιση μιας βιωματικής μαθησιακής διαδικασίας στο πλαίσιο της διδασκαλίας της περιβαλλοντικής εκπαίδευσης, βασισμένης στην επίκαιρη συζήτηση που διεξάγεται στον ευρύτερο επιστημονικό και κοινωνικό χώρο για τη σχέση του σύγχρονου ανθρώπου με τη φύση. Με έμπνευση από τη ριζοσπαστική παρακαταθήκη του έργου του Θορώ και με εργαλείο τη μέθοδο του «ημερολογίου της φύσης», φοιτήτριες και φοιτητές Παιδαγωγικού Τμήματος ενεπλάκησαν σε μία βιωματική και αναστοχαστική, συνεργατική, μαθησιακή διαδικασία που βασίστηκε στην επαφή τους με τη μη ανθρώπινη φύση στα όρια της πόλης και στην καταγραφή της εμπειρίας και των σκέψεών τους. Στο άρθρο αυτό, η επαφή με τη φύση προσεγγίζεται σε συνάρτηση με τον επιστημονικό διάλογο που εξελίσσεται γύρω από την ανάγκη υπέρβασης της διχοτόμησης μεταξύ φύσης και πολιτισμού. Επίσης, επιχειρείται η ανάλυση των εμπειριών των δημιουργών των ημερολογίων της φύσης, υπό το πρίσμα της φαινομενολογίας, αναδεικνύοντας τα οφέλη της βιωματικής προσέγγισης της φύσης μέσα από τη συμμετοχή των αισθήσεων και των συναισθημάτων στο πλαίσιο της περιβαλλοντικής εκπαίδευσης.
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Este libro trata de aprovechar el poder de la observación para participar en este momento único del estudio de la ecología. En esencia, toda la ecología se trata principalmente de la observación de la naturaleza, pero en la realidad de la ecología académica, las observaciones se transforman rápidamente en teorías que se prueban en una computadora o en tratamientos experimentales de campo o en un laboratorio donde se manipulan para probar hipótesis bien definidas. Estas son formas importantes de lograr la comprensión ecológica, métodos que han dominado la ecología durante más o menos el último medio siglo, pero tienen limitaciones que se hacen evidentes a medida que van cambiando los sistemas ecológicos. Aquí nos centramos en la “ecología basada en la observación”, que definimos como la ecología que se basa en observaciones de sistemas que no han sido manipulados con fines científicos. Esta es una definición amplia que abarca una variada gama de poderosas formas de observar y dar sentido a los sistemas ecológicos. Descubrir estos enfoques, sus fortalezas y sus debilidades, es de lo que trata este libro.
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Designing school settings that provide a satisfying experience of nature and enhance well-being could be advantageous for children and teachers, though in cold climates prolonged periods of precipitation, restricted sunshine and low temperatures represent non-ideal conditions for fostering a connection with nature. This paper reviews research into the relationships between principles of biophilic design and well-being, with specific consideration for learning environments in cold climates. Children spend more time in school than any other place, except the home, and most of their learning activities occur indoors. Given the large portion of the day children and teachers spend within the built environment, an architect's perspective investigates these relationships. The paper examines the concepts and research findings that appear to offer the greatest potential for future architectural applications in children's learning environments. It also identifies gaps in biophilic design strategies in relation to schools and the importance of considering climatic conditions to create satisfying experiences of nature within the built environment. If biophilic design research is to lead to healthier, more comfortable school settings that present a greater connection between learning spaces and the natural environment, then to identify and define beneficial guidelines that translate readily into architecture is essential.
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Creating a Sense of Place in School Environments guides its readers to the characteristics that tend to generate a sense of place through children’s vivid descriptions of their school and provides a body of critical information that can be employed to design a better school environment that can imprint cherished childhood memories. The childhood school environment calls for special attention regarding the sense of place it creates. The sense of place in childhood both affects children’s current quality of life and frames their lasting world view. It is well known that children’s cognitive development is closely related to their place attachment to their surroundings, and that children’s adaptation to a given environment depends on how such place attachment can be created. Therefore, it is natural that people’s identity in the world is the accumulation of their experience of place while in childhood. Cross- checking between the imprint of adults’ memories of places in school and children’s current “lived experience” of their favorite school place confirmed that certain spatial configurations, which the author herein refers to as “place generators” can generate positive attributes of physical settings that construct a sense of place and last as lifelong memories. It is an ideal read for academics, students, and professionals.
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Eco-revelatory design (ERD) is an ecological design concept in the field of landscape architecture means “a design strategy that attempts to enhance site ecosystems as well as engage users by revealing ecological and cultural phenomena, processes and relationships affecting a site ”. Landscape architects reveal nature through their form, materials and formation, and they also reveal the nature of the person who designed them. ERD is a new approach to landscape architecture, one where ecological processes and the environment is a fundamental determinant of the design.
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The aim of the study is to identify the level of Protective House Arrest (PHA) among children and both sexes, to know whether there is Intemperance practice of electronic games (IEG), and to find the relationship between the two search variables. The sample consisted of children (366 males, 302 females), whose ages (4-12 years) ranged from the children of Iraqi doctors and nurses working in government hospitals-the intensive care unit in Baghdad City. The parents' opinions were explored regarding the time children spent at home, And playing electronic games and watching TV, the study questionnaire, which was answered by a sample of parents consisting of (500, male and female doctors, males 90, females 110-male and female nurses-males 112, females 188), the results of the study: There is Protective House Arrest imposed on children by parents, conditions That children live like in densely populated areas, Blood and the presence of green spaces, few parks, helped significantly reduced to reach children to the natural world and the lack of participation in it, did not show results there are differences between males and females according to the research variables. The results showed a relationship between Protective House Arrest for Children and Intemperance in Electronic Games, as the long time's children spend at home make them closely linked with televisions, personal computers, digital music players and mobile phones. On average, children between (7-12) years of age, male children, spend 3-4 hours a day practising electronic games, and at least two hours watching TV, while the percentage of girls who spend their time in front of electronic devices screens is 3 hours per day And watching television for girls from 4-5 hours a day, and 72% of the parents answered that their children spend most of their time at home, while 28% of the parents indicated that their male and female children spend more than an hour outside.
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Dog fouling is recognised as antisocial, unhealthy and illegal in England, yet it persists. Much action against dog fouling happens in communities and impacts are largely unrecorded. Here, we report an activist project with primary-aged children in Bristol, England that resulted in dog fouling reductions near schools and reflects on the role of children in effecting social change in their local environment. The paper takes a New Materialist turn, de-centring experience from the individual child to the child in assemblages of more-than-human relations. Photos of children’s interventions against dog fouling are presented to explore how they have used material resources and creativity to emphasise the health and social risks of faeces from a child’s perspective. This provides a focus on child–faeces–environment assemblages where children adopt methods of activist art that comprise matter including the faeces to convey a new relational ontology of dog fouling and a reifying of the ‘problem’.
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During the COVID-19 pandemic, “opting outside” suddenly became the only way in which we were able to meet and engage face-to-face, shining a bright new light on the value of quality outdoor environments. Our past year of “zoom gloom” also reinforced the insight that insufficient contact with nature and excessive time spent indoors and hooked to technology seems to be responsible for many modern-day behavioral issues related to attention and mood, especially among children and teens. But what exactly constitutes a suitable playscape or landscape for play and outdoor learning in today’s urban and suburban environments? More than twenty years ago, this journal already aptly critiqued (traditional) playgrounds as “insignificant, underestimated and ignored” sites in the city. This 2021 issue of Built Environment takes another look at “playscapes” in cities more generally, with a particular view on how nature or natural elements have been (re)incorporated into playgrounds – but also how other, virtual, artificial or “smart” elements of play are competing, complementing or otherwise influencing the way children and young adults are experiencing the outdoors and how and what they are learning while outdoors. We took a broad view, understanding “playscapes” as important locales in our urbanized environments that by no means have to feature classic play structures such as swings, teeter-totters, or sand boxes. We are also mindful of the fact that access to nature has become an important theme in the environmental justice literature, as many studies show that higher socioeconomic status is highly correlated with superior access to green spaces. The issue draws its original inspiration from a Winter 2020 academic study trip to Sweden and Denmark where my students and I were exposed to some of the best examples of outdoor playscapes that Scandinavia has to offer. A special highlight was a magical first day on Lidingö Island with Siw Linde, the founder of the Swedish Rain-or-Shine forest preschool network, and a group of about 25 children aged 2-6 and their teachers where we experienced the true power of the Skogsmulle ‘love of the outdoors’ (Friluftsliv) pedagogy. The clever, safe use of sticks, rocks but also of adult-size sharp tools to engage in play and simple woodwork and bushcraft exercises was a recurring theme during the rest of our visit. We also learned that nature school can offer much more engaging ways to learn traditional subjects such as math or English. Scandinavian pedagogies are based on the firm belief that children must remain connected with nature even as they grow up in cities and suburbs. Natural playscapes may be designed and ‘edited’ - yet what matters that these playscapes be deeply and consciously integrated into our built environment and our daily experiences and learning. The contributions in this issue include examples of outdoor play and learning in Europe, the United States and Mexico. The three Scandinavian pieces were solicited directly following my Winter 2020 study tour, while the other three contributions stem from my desire to complement these Northern European insights with places where outdoor pedagogies are a less firmly established element of national education and culture. Another goal for this issue was to give voice to practitioners in addition to academics. The entire collection is framed by these practitioner perspectives. Helle Nebelong’s contribution is a lovely autobiographical account of how this gifted Danish landscape architect came to be convinced that “nature is the best place for children to play and develop their creativity.” Her rich insights speak for themselves. She was clearly ahead of her time in designing rich sensory experiences for children of all abilities, providing opportunity for contemplation and creative play. Maria Hammarsten reports on her walk-and-talk conversations with 8- and 9-year old Swedish schoolchildren, supplemented by photographs taken by the children themselves, to highlight their perspectives on ‘unedited’ outdoor places with natural features that were not designed by adults. Wendy Russell, John Fitzpatrick and Bridget Handscomb, meanwhile, investigate the value of play in natural playscapes not just among children but also among playworkers. Adventure or ‘junk’ playgrounds disrupt notions of directed and normative play. At Gwealan Tops Adventure Playground in Cornwall, UK playworkers made creative use of critical cartography in order to problematize simple binaries such as nature/culture, child/adult, and play/work. The members of the Swedish VASS project then report how specially programmed tablets were used to enhance the outdoor education segments in a Swedish primary school, thus creating experiences that were both “authentic” and “virtual.” Children scanned QR codes, overlayed information on local fauna and flora and use GPS coordinates for geocaching treasure hunts. Moving to North America, Anastasia Loukaitou-Sideris first discusses the causes and consequences of the underuse of playgrounds in Los Angeles before presenting different examples of smart, interactive play structures designed to entice children back to the outdoors. She also identifies playground underutilization as an environmental justice issue, noting that “especially for inner-city children … retrofitting the existing playgrounds near their homes should be a policy priority.” But should play really be confined to playgrounds? Colin Ward famously proclaimed that “one should be able to play everywhere easily, loosely and not forced into a playground or a park.” Edwina Portocarrero, echoes this same conundrum, asking “How can play opportunities be re-introduced in places where play has lost its grounds?” She offers ListenTree, “an audio-haptic display embedded in a tree” installed in a Mexico City park. Eight trees were outfitted with hidden bone-conductor technology such that visitors could hear famous Mexican poetry recited when hugging and leaning their ears against these trees. The site-specific cultural resonance of the installation during the Day of the Dead holiday made for a powerful blend of nature and technology that was both playful and deeply evocative for participants. As we continue to think through the idea of natural playscapes, we necessarily also continue to think through humanity’s relationship to nature, and our own nature in relationship to the environment we live in. The global movement for more and better natural playscapes transcends their local specificity and place-based attributes in each individual city.
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In recent years, the interest in the relationship between urban green space and residents’ mental health has gradually risen. A number of researchers have investigated the causal relationship and possible mediators between the two, although few have summarized these mediators. For this reason, we searched for relevant studies and filtered them by criteria and quality score, and analyzed the mediators and paths of the impact of urban green space on residents’ mental health. The mediators can be divided into environmental factors, outdoor activity, and social cohesion. From the perspective of heterogeneity, both individual characteristics (e.g., age and gender) and group characteristics (e.g., level of urban development and urban density) of residents are considered to be the cause of various mediating effects. Types of urban green space tend to affect residents’ mental health through different paths. Furthermore, this review discusses the details of each part under the influence paths. Finally, the policy implications for urban green space planning from three mediator levels are put forward based on an analysis of the situation in different countries.
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This paper reflects upon the value of education in nature, its features and particularities and especially its relationship with learning science and sustainability early in childhood. The relationship with the natural environment is closely linked to learning. Nature is replete with risk, emotions, challenges, etc. Walking through a fierce storm, running down a hill, or wading a river produce fear, courage, the desire to overcome difficulties and the subsequent joy in achieving it. Nature generates questions such as “Why do trees drop their leaves?”, “How does a beetle breathe?” or “What is the name of this flower?”. To answer these questions, children instinctively investigate. They form hypotheses, make choices and propose solutions. It is their way of training to learn science in the future. Likewise, constant contact with nature encourages ecological awareness, as well sustainable behaviour in harmony with the environment. All of that requires the involvement of the educational community, as well as a paradigm change towards a more complex view of education, issues this paper will focus on.
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As environmental educators continue to develop guidelines for curriculum, instruction, and professional development, it is important to consider the issue of transfer. This issue is particularly a concern in early childhood education, where the formation of environmental learning and attitudes is just beginning. The researcher attempted to determine how a variety of knowledges (declarative, procedural, and schematic) transferred when third-grade children were given problem situations. Data were analyzed using a multivariate analysis of covariance, and statistically significant results provide insight into further considerations for enhancing instruction in environmental education.
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For over a decade, a wilderness outing program in Michigan's Upper Peninsula has been the object of continuing research focusing on the impact of an intense nature experience on people's lives. The results discussed here are based on the questionnaires completed by the 49 participants in the last two years of the Program. A consistently striking finding of this ongoing research program has been the richness of the psychological benefits obtained. Based on familiarity and preference ratings of photographs, reactions to the solo experience, and ratings of moods and feelings both before and at the conclusion of the Program, the results speak to the pervasive power of the wilderness environment experience. It is suggested that the implications of these findings may transcend the particular environment. The psychological dimensions reflected here are likely to be vital aspects of effective human functioning in other settings as well.
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In this article, the effectiveness of field experience versus classroom experience was statistically compared in cognitive learning. Results indicated the need for a program consisting of four phases involving teacher inservice training, classroom development of advanced organization, outdoor experience, and classroom follow-up with further application and conceptualization. (Author/MA)
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This study focuses on three factors presumed to affect young children's development: their age, the quality of their home environments, and the child-pet relationship. Three sets of analyses are presented: effects associated with pet ownership (pet presence), effects associated with the strength of the child-pet relationship, and the combined effects of age, home environment, and the child-companion animal relationship. This study includes both a parent survey (n = 88) and in-home assessments (n = 44) of the three- to six-year-old children. The analyses support the hypothesis that normal preschool children's intellectual, motor, and social development is associated with the presence of a companion animal and increases with their age, the quality of their home environment, and their relationship with a companion animal. While the children's age and the quality of their home environments were associated with measures of the children's cognitive, motor, and social development, the companion animal effect was limited to the young children's social development including their empathy for other children.
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This paper reviews the patterns and effects of early adolescents' involvement in the care of animals and the relationship between that experience and selected family and individual variables. It provides baseline data on early adolescents and animal involvement concerning: species of animals, family income, family relationships, parental views of animal raising, animal owner self-esteem and self-management, and the view of youth on the benefits of animal involvement.
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Reports that the self-concepts of 188 undergraduates were related to the age when they had their 1st pet. The Tennessee Self-Concept Scale (TSCS) Total Positive Self-Concept scores were higher if Ss were under 6 yrs or over 10 yrs old than if they were between 6 and 10 yrs old when they had their 1st pet. Similar results were found for the TSCS Physical and Social subscales. Whereas gender effects were also found, no significant pet ownership or other childhood Companion Animal Bonding Scale (R. H. Poresky et al; see record 1988-22081-001) effects were found. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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A follow-up of 46 youthful clients discharged from a therapeutic camp between its inception in 1972 and September 1975 indicates an overall improvement in functioning, especially in the areas of school performance, interpersonal relationships, and household behavior. The one area in which no overall improvement was found was delinquency.