Research

Check out some of the research on the benefits of unstructured outdoor play. We'll continue to add new articles so it's worth coming back to this page from time to time!

Pragmatic evaluation of the Go2Play Active Play intervention on physical activity and fundamental movement skills in children.

12 Oct 2017

Active play is a novel approach to addressing low physical activity levels and fundamental movement skills (FMS) in children. This study aimed to determine if a new school-based, ‘Go2Play Active Play’ intervention improved school day physical activity and FMS. This was a pragmatic evalua…

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Elementary physical education: A focus on fitness activities and smaller class sizes are associated with higher levels of physical activity

11 Oct 2017

Optimizing physical activity during physical education is necessary for children to achieve daily physical activity recommendations. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship among various contextual factors with accelerometer measured physical activity during elementary ph…

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Children’s screen time From Growing Up in Australia: The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children, 2015 Report

10 Oct 2017

Key findings A majority of Australian children are spending more than the recommended two-hour daily limit for screen time (watching television, on computers and playing electronic games). At 4–5 years old, children average more than two hours screen time per week-day. By 12–13 yea…

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Global kids study: More trees, less disease

9 Oct 2017

A University of Vermont-led study of 300,000 children in 35 nations says kids whose watersheds have greater tree cover are less likely to experience diarrheal disease, the second leading cause of death for children under the age of five. Published in Nature Communications, the study is the f…

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The role of Outdoor Education in child development in Italian nursery schools

29 Sep 2017

This study aimed to investigate the influence of Outdoor Education (OE) on different areas of development in 1–3-year-old children attending Italian nursery schools. The sample was composed of 160 children (1–3-year-old) divided into a first group (Traditional), with 76 children atten…

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Daily touchscreen use in infants and toddlers is associated with reduced sleep and delayed sleep onset

20 Sep 2017

Abstract: Traditional screen time (e.g. TV and videogaming) has been linked to sleep problems and poorer developmental outcomes in children. With the advent of portable touchscreen devices, this association may be extending down in age to disrupt the sleep of infants and toddlers, an age when sle…

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Green schoolyards offer physical and mental health benefits for children

15 Sep 2017

CHICAGO - A growing body of evidence supports the claim that access to safe, natural areas improves health across a wide variety of areas, including heart health, mental health, weight management, ADHD, and stress among children. A concept gaining momentum in this realm is green schoolyards. But wha…

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Handheld screen time linked with speech delays in young children

11 May 2017

SAN FRANCISCO - As the number of smart phones, tablets, electronic games and other handheld screens in U.S. homes continues to grow, some children begin using these devices before beginning to talk. New research being presented at the 2017 Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting suggests these children…

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Exploring the Relations Between Childhood Experiences in Nature and Young Adults’ Environmental Attitudes and Behaviours

31 Mar 2017

This article presents the findings of a research study with young adults who explored the connections between their early childhood experiences in nature and their attitudes and actions towards the environment in adulthood. Drawing on E. Wilson's (1984) work, environmental or ecological consciou…

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Nature For Health and Equity

22 Mar 2017

Europeans face health and social challenges that merit urgent attention – obesity, mental health problems, social exclusion, air and noise pollution, and heat stress in cities. These issues particularly affect socio-economically disadvantaged and vulnerable groups and put pressure on already s…

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