25 Outdoor Play and Nature

Child playing in puddle

READ FIRST- Learn about the benefits of being in nature for children from the selection below.

CHOOSE TWO– Select at least two of the articles below to learn more about the importance of outdoor play.

In this article from NAEYC, Burton suggests ways to take advantage of rainy days and how children might benefit from playing in the rain.

In this article from NAEYC, Frost and Sutterby share a historical perspective about young children’s outdoor play by sharing thoughts about the topics: kindergarten, parks, playgrounds, and safety.

In this tip sheet, Head Start Body Start provides suggestions of how to support children’s outdoor play by making changes to the play space.

In this article from Community Playthings, Gano & Krull share how children can explore their senses during their time outside.

In this article from Edutopia, Merrill includes highlights from several research studies focused on children’s time outdoors and provides evidence for the benefits of time in nature.

In this blog post from Brain & Child Development. Play. Education Innovation., Meaghan shares insights about how outdoor play, particularly messy play, has benefits to children’s development of fine motor skills.

In this article from Community Playthings, Hanscom shares the importance of play, particularly outdoors and how the recent pandemic influences children’s access to play.

CHOOSE ONE– Select at least one of the following videos to gain another perspective about children’s play outside.

Learn about how children can include loose parts in their outdoor play.

In this video from Head Start, Jarvis shares highlights of the benefits of outdoor play for young children and how families can support this type of play.



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