In the United States, maximum security facilities require prisoners to spend two hours of each day outdoors. The outdoor time is crucial because it allows inmates to let frustrations go, keep their bodies strong, and just breathe fresh air. Being outside also has the same positive effects on children. However, Treehugger is reporting on the disturbing new findings of a survey from the Dirt is Good—Free the Children campaign: One out of two kids worldwide spend less than an hour of each day outside. In 10 countries, 12,000 parents with children aged five to 12 participated in the survey, and a shocking one-third of these kids spend less than 30 minutes of daily time outside.
According to Treehugger, “This new survey reiterates what we’ve been hearing from many different sources—that kids are spending far too much time in the house watching screens, instead of engaging in free play outdoors, using their imaginations and getting dirty. Outdoor time should be thought of as a right possessed by children, not something that is limited to those whose parents have the time, resources, or inclination to take them out.” The story doesn’t highlight any possible solutions, but it’s hard not to wonder why schools can’t give kids more outdoor free play time? If there are kids in your life, take them outside today. Not sure what to do? Here are 50 fun activities to do with kids.
Playing outside is essential to a child’s development. Learn more about it in The Power of Play.
What do you think of this news? Do you think it’s sad that we have to compare children to prisoners in order to bring light on this subject?