Research

Research into the importance of nature play, learning outdoors, risk-taking and children's mental and physical health and wellbeing forms the basis for the work we do.

Here you'll find the latest scientific research that shows the benefits of nature play for our children!

Use the Search function, or click on a keyword in Resource Categories to find research about a particular subject.

Nature, smells, and human wellbeing

The link between nature and human wellbeing is well established. However, few studies go beyond considering the visual and auditory underpinnings of this relationship, even though engaging with nature is a multisensory experience.

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Effects of Limiting Recreational Screen Media Use on Physical Activity and Sleep in Families With Children

Key Points Question  Does limiting recreational screen media use increase habitual physical activity in children? Findings  In this cluster randomized clinical trial that included 181 children and 164 adults from 89 families, an intervention designed to limit recreational screen use resulted in a mean (SD) increase in children’s nonsedentary time of 44.8 (63.5) minutes per day with […]

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Getting Out of the Classroom and Into Nature: A Systematic Review of Nature-Specific Outdoor Learning on School Children’s Learning and Development

Background: The value of natural environments for developing children’s self-identity and social skills has been known for some time, and more recently the potential of nature-specific (i.e., excluding built environments) outdoor learning for achieving academic outcomes has been explored. Connecting children with natural spaces has been shown to benefit their physical and mental health; however, […]

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Child’s Play: Examining the Association Between Time Spent Playing and Child Mental Health

Abstract It is theorised that adventurous play offers learning opportunities that help to prevent mental health problems in children. In this study, data from two samples is used to examine associations between the time that children aged 5–11 years spent playing adventurously and their mental health. For comparison, time spent playing unadventurously and time spent playing […]

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Reframing Sport for Teenage Girls: Tackling teenage disengagement

The Women in Sport Reframing Sport for Teenage Girls insight showed the need to engage girls in more active lifestyles has never been more urgent. This generation of teenage girls are experiencing worrying mental health issues and report being less confident, less happy and increasingly concerned with their appearance[1]. The pandemic has amplified these issues for many girls.

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Walking Curriculum: Literacy on the Move

By going on walks every day, Anna connected her first graders with nature, with their community, and with each other. They exercised their bodies and minds simultaneously. Moreover, their walks provided an authentic context for literacy development. Learning on the move is not just effective, either. It is also a lot of fun!

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Physical environmental opportunities for active play and physical activity level in preschoolers: a multicriteria analysis

Physical environmental opportunities for active play have a positive effect on physical activity in preschoolers and should be encouraged in different social segments.

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People’s desire to be in nature and how they experience it are partially heritable

Abstract Nature experiences have been linked to mental and physical health. Despite the importance of understanding what determines individual variation in nature experience, the role of genes has been overlooked. Here, using a twin design (TwinsUK, number of individuals = 2,306), we investigate the genetic and environmental contributions to a person’s nature orientation, opportunity (living […]

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Multisite greenness exposure and oxidative stress in children. The potential mediating role of physical activity

Residential greenness exposure has been reported to positively impact health mainly by reducing overweight/obesity risk, improving mental health and physical activity.

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Commissioner for Children and Young People Speaking Out Survey 2021

In the Commissioner’s second Speaking Out Survey, 16,532 children and young people from all regions of WA shared their experiences and views on safety, mental health, engagement in education, connection to community and how they access sources of support. The findings will be valuable for anyone working with children and young people, across both government […]

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