September: Facebook Cover Photo Contest "Outdoor Learning" 

Here are our September Facebook cover photo winners! This month's theme was "Outdoor Learning!" Whether it's from a book or straight from nature, schooling outdoors has so many incredible benefits! 

Here are a few key benefits:

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School performance increases when children learn outdoors

A number of studies have documented increased school performance through outdoor education. Research has document increased standardized test scores, enhanced attitude about school, improved in-school behavior, improved attendance and overall enhanced student achievement when students learn in and about nature. In addition, outdoor education effectively employs a greater range of children's intelligence. Many researchers contribute the increase in performance to increased relevance and hands-on experience of learning outdoors.

Learning outdoors is healthy

Learning outdoors is active and increases students' physical, mental and social health. Some studies have even shown follow-up (e.g., non-school) physical activity increases with outdoor learning. Access to nature has also been shown to decrease the symptoms of ADHD. Outdoor learning and access to nature also decrease stress levels of students and teachers 

Learning outdoors supports child development

Children greatly benefit developmentally from being outdoors. Outdoor education and play support emotional, behavioral and intellectual development. Studies have shown that students who learn outdoors develop: a sense of self, independence, confidence, creativity, decision-making and problem-solving skills, empathy towards others, motor skills, self-discipline and initiative.