October 25th is Take Me Outside Day
As the days grow shorter and cold weather settles in, it is important for people to be reminded of the benefits of spending more time outdoors. The simple act of going outside is more important than ever, with people spending less time outside in favour of digital devices. In fact, according to Take Me Outside, Canadian youth spend nearly 8 hours per day in front of screens.
In response to the digital retreat – away from nature towards technology – teachers, educators, parents, and students are encouraged to go outside on Wednesday October 25 (and everyday) as part of Take Me Outside Day.
“Take Me Outside started with a run across Canada,” says Collin Harris, Executive Director at Take Me Outside, “we now collaborate with over 200,000 students across Canada to encourage children and youth to spend more time outside.”
Take Me Outside Day is an annual event that encourages educators across Canada and around the world to show the importance of spending time outside. It is a day to support education extending beyond four walls and a desk while harnessing the power of outdoor experiential learning.
“There has been a remarkable shift among our visitors over the past 10 years – it is apparent that kids are not spending as much time outside,” says Jessica Deacon-Rogers, Technician with the Helen Schuler Nature Centre, “this affects their confidence and overall willingness to spend time outdoors.”
There is good reason to spend more time outside – especially for students and teachers as there is a growing body of research indicating that nature can improve academic outcomes. The Children & Nature Network encourages spending time in nature because it can improve children’s academic performance, focus, behaviour, and love of learning. Beyond academia, connecting with nature is good for every aspect of human health and wellness. The list of benefits spans mental wellness to physical and emotional health.
“The outdoors is a real classroom with teachable moments with every step,” says Coreen Putman, Manager at Helen Schuler Nature Centre, “if teachers are unsure of how to use the outdoors as part of their classroom, we are here to help.”
For those seeking inspiration to get outside, plan a visit to the Helen Schuler Nature Centre. Spending time outside as an important part of growing up is a central theme of the Nature Centre’s current exhibit “100 Reasons to Go Outside.” The “100 Reasons to Go Outside” exhibit is on until November 4, 2017 and provides a great chance to better understand the benefits of being outdoors.
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If you would like more information, please contact:
Take Me Outside
Collin Harris at [email protected]
Helen Schuler Nature Centre
Curtis Goodman at 403-320-4985 or [email protected]
If you would like more information about Take Me Outside Day, please visit http://takemeoutside.ca/