News

Through knowledge mobilization, we want to connect and align efforts by sharing resources, tools, training, research and stories. Browse through the latest news items related to outdoor play.

OUTSIDEPLAY.ca : an online tool to help parents and caregivers gain the confidence to allow their kids to engage in more outdoor play.

Posted by Megan Forse on March 12, 2019

OUTSIDEPLAY.ca is a fantastic resource for parents to explore and better understand risky play, why it is so important, and how to have the confidence to encourage risky play for children. The online tool guides users through a personalized journey, allowing them to determine their approach when it comes to risky play, decide what changes they would like to make, and develop an personalized plan to facilitate desired changes.  ...

Exposure to natural green environments can promote children’s mental well being

Posted by Megan Forse on March 4, 2019

More and more parents, practitioners, teachers, and researchers are interested in how nature can be beneficial for children as place to learn,play, socially interact, and become connected. A growing body of research published in the last decade shows promising results that regular classes in natural green environments (e.g. EOtC  – Education Outside the Classroom) can promote students’ physical activity, learning motivation, academic achievements, and social competencies. Many studies focusing on associations between human health and...

Nature Canada releases report; Screen Time vs. Green Time: The Health Impacts of too much Screen Time

Posted by Megan Forse on February 25, 2019

Nature Canada, a national charitable organization has released a report titled “Screen Time vs. Green Time” The Health Impacts of too much Screen Time” exposing the negative impacts of screen time on Canadian children and providing suggestions to guide children away from screens, and towards nature. Report highlights and findings In an article summarizing the Screen Time vs. Green Time report, NatureHood Program Manager Jill Sturdy highlights some of the reports major findings 87% of...

Study: cross-sectional associations of screen time and outdoor play with social skills in preschool children

Posted by Megan Forse on February 19, 2019

As we continue to understand the benefits of outdoor active play, and the consequences of screen time, research is expanding to explore the influence of outdoor play and screen time on specific areas of children’s health and development. A recently published study in PLOS ONE titled “Cross sectional associations of screen time and outdoor play with social skills in preschool children”.  discusses the relatively unexplored link between screen time and outdoor play on social skills.  One of the...

Registration for Healthy Parks, Healthy People is Open

Posted by Joel Barnes on February 8, 2019

Registration for Healthy Parks, Healthy People has just opened. The 2019 Healthy Parks Healthy People Forum will bring together parks and recreation professionals, health professionals, researchers, policy-makers, academics, students, trainees and community members to share the latest research, best practices, and progressive policies related to the human health and well-being benefits of nature. This includes both direct contact with nature and a healthy environment. Healthy Parks Healthy People is a worldwide movement which was launched by Parks Victoria...

A crisis in childhood is happening every day, all around us

Posted by Joel Barnes on February 5, 2019

The Children’s Play Policy Forum has today issued a policy statement identifying a crisis in childhood and calling for more children’s play opportunities. The cancellation of public liability insurance for children’s playgrounds comes at a time when new research is encouraging less screen time and more outdoor play. The Children’s Play Policy Forum is made up...

Power of Play – Watch NOW!

Posted by Megan Forse on January 31, 2019

The Power of Play documentary is now out! Watch unusual inter-species animals play and communicate, as top play scientists examine the root and importance of play among humans and animals.  ...

Canadian Parks Conference set to take place October 2019!

Posted by Megan Forse on January 23, 2019

Save the date! The 2019 Canadian Parks Conference is set to take place in Quebec City on October 7 to 10.   Join over 400 Canadian and international professionals and partners from all sectors of society who plan to meet and make positive change to support healthy nature and healthy people, for our generation and the one to come. The conference is focused on expanding Canada’s collective awareness, understanding and appreciation of the importance and value of parks and plans to address collaboration, connecting to nature, conservation, and leadership. In addition, the conference is an opportunity...

Why YOU should #FreeYourPlay

Posted by Megan Forse on January 16, 2019

“In a recent survey, Kamik found that nowadays, children participate in over 5-6 structured activities per week. Hence, there is hardly ever any time left to play freely, outside. In fact, children spend 30-35% less time playing outside than their parents did.” Structured activities, such as soccer practice, swim lessons and dance class can be a great way to spend time, but it is important to make sure structured activities are not getting in the way...

The Power of Play: releasing January 20th

Posted by Megan Forse on January 8, 2019

On January 20th, 2019 at 8pm, The Nature of Things will be releasing a documentary called The Power of Play. In addition to talking about the importance of play in children, the documentary touches on play in mammals, amphibians, reptiles and even insects! We know humans and pets love to play, but it is interesting to watch some unusual animals, such as the giant Pacific octopus, exhibit playful behaviours.  Watch a short clip ...