Five-Star Program for Pre-Kindergarten, Preschool, Toddler and Infant Education located in Greenville, NC.

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Benefits of Outdoor Play for Early Child Development

In this modern age, children have constant access to technology through an impressive array of devices – something that can be hard to tear them away from. With screen time consistently increasing, there has been a steady decline in the amount of outdoor play. 

The benefits of outdoor play for early childhood development have been proven time and again, allowing valuable opportunities for your kids to develop new skills, encounter new experiences, and engage in important interactions that cannot be found indoors. 

Here are a few reasons you should focus on cutting down screen time and replacing it with more time playing outside.

Reducing Time Spent Indoors

On average, children spend around seven hours using electronics, whether that is behind TV, phone, or computer screens. More often they will choose to spend this sedentary indoor time over outdoor activities. It is up to you as a carer and parent to help them step outside and into the sunlight, even if just for a couple of hours a day.

Playing Outside is Fun – Sometimes Getting Outside is the Tricky part

Benefits of Outdoor play for early child development

The trick with outdoor play is finding a way to make it feel like a fun activity rather than a chore or punishment that forces your kids to turn off their electronics. Moving indoor activities outdoors, and even bringing their devices out with them, are some basic starting points that can promote your child’s time outside.

What Are the Benefits of Outdoor Play for Early Childhood Development?

Encouraging outdoor play and learning has an invaluable effect that you would be remiss to ignore. 

Here are some important reasons you should encourage your little one to play outside.

  • Physical activity: Spending too much time using electronics leads to a sedentary lifestyle that could have an adverse effect on your child’s health and growth. Not only does outdoor play increase physical activity and development, but it also helps to build motor skills, develop immunity and strong bones, and even improve sleep.
  • Social development: Spending time outdoors with other children provides your little ones with opportunities to interact and build their social skills and communication. Interacting with new people will also teach them the value of diversity along with empathy – experiences that will have a lasting positive impact in their lives.
  • Imagination use: The importance of outdoor play in early childhood extends right through to impacting their creativity and imagination. Playing outside encourages children to find enjoyment in life beyond screens, and even helps them to entertain themselves using their minds. 
  • Educational opportunities: Time spent outside can also promote learning through outdoor play. Your kid will get to discover the outdoors and engage in problem-solving while getting a break from indoor learning. Outside activities can also help to improve their social and cognitive performance.
  • Emotional benefits: Playing outside can help relieve stress, boost confidence and self-esteem, and allows your child the ability to enjoy a sense of control. It can even reduce tendencies to misbehave or bully.

Suggestions to Encourage Your Preschooler to Want to Play Outside

There are a great number of opportunities to get your child to play outdoors. 

  • If you are fortunate to have a backyard, investing in some outdoor play products such as jungle gyms, swings, or water tables will give your kids quick access to outdoor entertainment. 
  • Outdoor games are just as entertaining – who can forget playing hopscotch on the pavement?
  • That being said, you can just as easily take your little one to the park, on a walk through nature, or a trip to the pool. 
  • You can even start off by moving snack time outdoors as a quick and easy way to encourage them to want to be outside.

Children’s Campus of Greenville is Dedicated to Child Development

The benefits of outdoor play for early childhood development are everlasting, which is why here at Children’s Campus of Greenville, we dedicate time to balancing both indoor and outdoor play as a part of our curriculum.   If you are interested in scheduling a tour of our 5-Star Child Care Center conveniently located in the heart of Greenville,  we would love to hear from you! Please call us at 252-756-8200 or fill out the form below to schedule a tour.

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