The importance of unstructured,
Frequent outdoor play helps children build strong bones, improve cardiovascular endurance, and promote muscle development. Movement on the variety of surfaces that the natural environment presents also allows kids to strengthen their balance and coordination.
Unstructured, outdoor play has a tremendous amount of mental benefits for children including increased resilience and self-confidence. The flexibility allowed in an unstructured vs. structured setting provides kids with opportunities to be creative, problem solve, and apply higher-order thinking skills.
Nature play nurtures a calm and peaceful environment for children to interact with one another. They stumble upon new discoveries, and create interactions with each other they may not have been possible indoors. They embrace the wonder of the outdoors, and share that wonder with one another.
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More on nature and play from Richard Louv:
Schools on the Move
Finnish Schools on the Move is a national action programme aiming to establish a physically active culture in Finnish comprehensive schools. Schools and municipalities participating in the programme implement their own individual plans to increase physical activity during the school day. More than 90% of municipalities and of comprehensive schools (2 116 schools) are involved in the programme.