I imagine every parent has, at some point, tried desperately to drag their children away from the TV or computer screen. When you’re trying to do this in order to get them to do homework or study, the task becomes infinitely harder. Some parents may have the opposite problem, and struggle to get their children inside to study after a fun few hours playing with their friends.
This shouldn’t be the case, and something many parents don’t consider is the idea of outdoor study. Instead of making the children go to their study materials, why not bring the books to them? This way you and their teachers are satisfied that the academic work is being done. What’s more; the children themselves, despite perhaps being unhappy at having to do homework, will at least feel some comfort in the fact they aren’t stuck in their bedroom slaving away over their books while the weather is nice outdoors.
Don’t just take my word for it though. Studies have suggested that children who spend the large majority of their time indoors are likely to suffer from Richard Louv’s “nature deficit disorder” – feeling alienated and increasingly apathetic. Since Louv’s coining of the phrase in 2005, more studies by organizations such as the National Trust have served to further back his point up.
Outdoor study is a great way to ensure that children are exposed to the outdoors enough, whilst getting their academic work done. Studies have shown an improvement in not only general well being and behavior, but also their educational performance too. Putting together a special environment in your garden for study could reap huge rewards and promote a more healthy learning style.
Of course, the weather plays a huge part in just how possible it is to do this. If you live in an area where the weather is unpredictable, then buying a canopy for your garden might be a good idea. Obviously this isn’t a cheap option, but it will help keep the child and their equipment dry. What’s more – if you’re planning on buying a new desk and chair for the child to use while studying, they can be kept outside if they are protected. Many people don’t consider this, but it’s also worth protecting them from the sun as well as the rain. Excessive rain causes many problems, but blistering sun also causes fade and more subtle wear and tear.
While it may take some time for children to get used to, outdoor study should display benefits in the long run. The novelty of studying outside should appeal to the child at first and become second nature in no time. What starts off as a distraction should soon become the norm, and improvements in many different aspects of the child’s life should be visible over time.