In the early 1980s, Edward O. Wilson, a Harvard University biologist, suggested a theory named biophilia, describing humans’ instinctive inclination towards nature. However, many modern parents probably doubt this theory, as they see their children clearly choosing screen time over outdoor play. In today’s article, we are going to dive into the main reasons why you should encourage your kids to spend more time playing outdoors:
- Playing outdoors stimulates creativity and imagination
Creativity is playful and exploratory work, which kids naturally do when playing outdoors. It stimulates creativity, helps children think more freely, allows them to approach challenges in new ways, and gives them a meaningful way to connect with their world. Children are using their own imagination to shape the reality around them rather than relying on the structure of a video game. This can help foster creativity and critical thinking skills by giving kids unstructured ways to engage with the world.
- Playing outdoors reduces stress and fatigue
In a world of sensory overload, even the youngest children can experience stress and fatigue. The Attention Restoration theory states that exposure to nature is not only pleasant and relaxing but also clears the mind. Urban environments require directed attention, which becomes exhausting. Natural settings allow children to practice soft fascination, an effortless type of attention that evokes relaxation.
- Playing outdoors is healthy
Physical activity is essential to maintaining good health, improving fine and gross motor skills, and creating positive habits that are likely to stick around in adulthood as well. Playing outside inspires children to take on physical challenges, from climbing rocks to running around and swinging from a branch, reducing obesity risks and enabling them to find entertainment in something other than a screen and a couch.
- Playing outdoors develops essential life skills
Children benefit from a connection to nature from an emotional standpoint as well. Experiences related to caring for plants, animals, and the environment help children foster life-long interests in the natural world and a sense of empathy and respect for other species.
- Playing outdoors provides better stimulation
While the newest video or mobile game can keep your little one entertained for hours, that’s not necessarily the kind of healthy stimulation you’re looking for. Natural materials like wood inspire imagination, open creative avenues, and cultivate healthy development. Moreover, recent studies showcase that organic textures like wood have a positive neurological impact on children, promoting calmness, improving focus, and reducing anxiety.
The bottom line
We hope this article will motivate parents to spend more time playing in nature with their little ones. Of course, you may still allow your children to play video games and watch movies sometimes – we are not against these forms of entertainment. We simply encourage all parents to take some time for their children and expose them to nature as much as possible, instead of letting them stay glued to a screen all day long.
Of course, you need the perfect attire for a day well-spend in nature. ForUMomma offers super cool outdoor clothing items and accessories for mothers and children as well.