Being outside is the perfect place for kids to be kids with the freedom to shout, jump, run, hop or skip. In fact, by taking your children outdoors and supporting their play, you can help their development. This article covers lots of information about the positive impact and importance of outdoor activities for kids.
The importance of outdoor play for kids
Big Foot Preschool strongly believes that outdoor play has great benefits for a child’s overall development. Young children need the opportunity to use their whole body and develop their gross motor skills. It’s only when they have mastered these that they will be able to control their fine motor skills, such as using a spoon and fork or holding a pencil, for instance. As a result, children playing outside can have a positive impact.
The Play Strategy for Scotland 2013 says: ‘Open space allows children to be physically active and challenge themselves so they sleep and eat well and form healthy habits that will stay with them for life.’
Nature activities for kids
The changing nature of the outdoors makes it an incredibly stimulating and multi-sensory place to play. This is important as young children learn and gain experience through all their senses.
Children who gain knowledge and appreciation of nature are more likely to become adults with a greater sense of environmental awareness. Big Foot Preschool encourages child to do gardening so that they learn and appreciate nature.
A great way to create happy memories of outdoor play and nature is to collect and bring things to the classroom for extended learning, such as twigs, leaves or stones. These can be decorated, put in a keepsake jar or used to make a picture. Keeping items like this in child’s view for a few days will remind them of their adventures outside and also help with their awareness of shapes, colours and textures. It also helps them retain the knowledge gained from the experience.