Over to our guest this week to talk about the benefits of nature for children and families
Thank you for inviting us to write for your wonderful blog Becky. If you haven’t come across before we’re Little Muddy Boots and we run nature and gardening based classes for children aged 1-6. We’re passionate about getting children outdoors and learning about the wonderful world of nature.
The Benefits of Nature for Children and Families
One of things we really wanted to talk about today was the benefits of nature to both children and families’ mental health.
In 2014, a National Trust survey revealed that the majority of children play outside for less than an hour a day, less than a third of the time enjoyed by their grandparents’ generation. We really want to change this.
The impact of playing outside for children is huge. We know it is meant to reduce stress and anxiety, increase concentration, and helps us to connect to others. We also know that being outdoors makes us happier.
In our classes we believe there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing and at home we want to encourage families to adopt this in their own lives. Every weekend, whatever the weather try and make time to go out together, wrap up and enjoy the outdoors. Splashing in muddy puddles isn’t just for Peppa Pig!
Getting outside as a family is such a great way to slow down even if it is for just a short time. Children give us the unique chance to see the things through their eyes. When you go on a family walk, try taking the time to pause and really look at the world around you. Don’t set a step goal or a place you want to walk to. Instead pause and look at things with your children. Hunt and explore for bugs, look at the different leaves, or stick your tongue out and feel the raindrops on your tongue. It might feel alien at first, but it will really help you to connect and have fun together.
We know that if families did this regularly, even just for thirty minutes per day, it would give them such a boost. It would improve everyone’s mental health and emotional bonds.
If we would love to see anything change in the modern world, it would be to see more families playing outdoors. We know it would be a better place if we did. If you’re one of those parents that would love to do this but are not sure where to start, we have some activity cards that can help you.
We sell activity cards by season with activities for you to do outside with little ones to help you get out and engage in nature more.
We love the outdoors; it’s an amazing and miraculous place and we want you to love it too.
The benefits of holidays in the great outdoors