The importance of green space for children - asthetic, athletic and academic

There is a wide range of factors which directly and indirectly influence children's healthy development. One consistent message from different fields of expertise, including educators, psychologists, geographers, environmentalists and biologists, is that spending time in natural environments enhances aspects of children's physical, sociological, social and psychological development. This report considers why natural environments might be beneficial to children, what types of benefits may be taking place and where natural play environments may be found. The importance of nature to children's development has been suggested across both decades and disciplines. Children themselves prefer natural to built environments and specifically trees and grassy spaces. Natural play settings provide more opportunities for both physical and creative play than built play settings. Children with both normal and compromised attention have a greater ability to concentrate after exposure to a natural setting than a built setting, regardless of the activity that has taken place. Green school grounds may be the only natural environment that children have access to on an everyday basis. Spending time in a green school ground is likely to benefit children's physical and psychological development in ways not previously considered, but this awaits further exploration. Available research suggests, however, that green play settings can contribute to physical and psychological indicators of children's healthy development.

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