With the longer days and warmer weather of summer, kids can enjoy all the Canadian outdoors has to offer. Not only are nature adventures fun, but research from environmental organizations like Forest and Nature School in Canada suggest that outdoor play and interaction with green environments can reduce stress while increasing patience, confidence, social skills, motivation, creativity and concentration. Outdoor play also strengthens physical stamina and fine and gross motor skills, while helping children learn about the environment.
With research continuing to show that youth participation in outdoor activities is declining and time spent in front of an electronic screen is rising, TD Friends of the Environment Foundation shares tips to encourage kids to get outside this summer.
- Set daily, weekly and monthly goals for outdoor play. Create a calendar with fun visuals and stickers that kids can use to log their time outside.
- Take turns planning daily outdoor activities the whole family can enjoy, like hide-and-seek, hiking and biking.
- Encourage kids to find a shady tree to sit under and write in a nature journal to capture the interesting things they see outside. Spice up a written journal by snapping photos to create a nature collage.
- Volunteer with an organization that supports local environmental projects, like TD Friends of the Environment Foundation. Families can create greener communities by joining TD Tree Days, as well as community gardens and outdoor classrooms.