Outdoor Classroom Day Brings Adventure to Learning
Schools and parents across the nation will unite for Australia's first ever 'Outdoor Classroom Day' on September 7, following a report that children spend too much time indoors.
The 'OMO Dirt is Good' survey of 1,000 parents and kids across the nation found 85% of Australian children spend less than 2 hours playing outside, 36% less than previous generations.
The issue is a challenge for parents, with 73% admitting they face huge challenges in getting their children to play outdoors, and 80% are worried that their children will not be equipped with the skills they’ll need for the future because of it.
When asked what they value most about their play time, Aussie primary school kids ranked their iPad or games console (32%) as the thing they enjoy most about their day – more than outdoor play with friends (25%).
However, the majority of parents (78%) and kids (93%) say they would like more classes to take place outdoors.
To do something about it, parents and teachers will come together for the nation’s inaugural Outdoor Classroom Day on September 7.
Across the world over 1.1 million children in 10,085 schools are involved and enjoying playing and learning outside the classroom.
Over 70,000 Aussie kids, in almost 900 schools, have signed up for the day already, with interested teachers able to register their school at www.outdoorclassroomday.com.au.
Griffin Longley, CEO, Nature Play said, “Quite simply, if children don’t get enough play it can get in the way of them being equipped for the future.
“Real play helps kids build creativity, social resilience, fine and gross motor skills and perseverance) – which are fundamental skills for flourishing in a fast-changing world.
“Play helps cultivate the ability for children to confront, tackle and overcome difficult situations and adapt to challenges and, sometimes, failures. Through this, kids are able to develop self-confidence and become more sensitive to the needs of others.
“These are clearly hugely beneficial skills that children need to master and own for both their todays and their tomorrows, he said.
Parents can also get involved by downloading resources for real play activities with their kids online.