Why Children and Nature?
Children who learn in nature and play outdoors are happier, healthier, and smarter!
Happier by Nature. To feel the sun and the rain on our skin, dig in the soil with our hands, hear crickets chirp, and see birds soar is to form a bond with other living things and the world we share. By venturing into “nearby nature,” children and families have opportunities to explore and learn while having fun and bonding. Resources at Families.
Healthier by Nature. Nature is the ideal playscape for the climbing, running, pondering, and wondering that are essential for healthy child development. Playing outdoors in nature is a high-touch alternative to a technology-saturated lifestyle. Children and families that connect with nature increase their mental and physical wellness and gain a sense of life balance. Resources at Health.
Smarter by Nature. Nature is an outdoor classroom where children experience science, math, language, and group learning by observing, touching, listening, smelling, telling, and doing. When children connect with nature, they also connect with each other, their families, and the community as they learn that they are part of something bigger than themselves. Through their experiences in nature, they become more passionate stewards of the natural world. Resources at Classroom Teachers.
We invite you to get involved in the Collaborative:
- Take time to enjoy nature with your children, grandchildren, friends, and neighbors–today!
- Join a project group or be a project coordinator to increase children’s nature experiences in school or youth programs.
- Develop contacts for Parent-Teacher associations or serve as School Nature Champion for your school district or school.
- Draft and provide graphics for informational materials for exhibits, fairs, and local audiences.
- Suggest additional information to add to this website.
- Post information on our Facebook page about local nature places and programs for children and families.
- Invite SDCaN to give a presentation at a meeting of your service club, school, garden club, business or other gathering.