Posted by Karen Wong

August 01, 2019

Learning doesn’t necessarily need to take place inside the classroom. Many schools have been incorporating outdoor learning into their curriculum. Outdoor learning can be beneficial to student’s health and their academic performance. It also helps encourage skillsets such as problem-solving and negotiating risk.

Here are some benefits that outdoor learning can bring:

Better Grades:

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Outdoor learning programs can enhance a student's cognitive function and academic performance. According to a report by the National Wildlife Federation, students that studied outdoors scored higher grades in reading, math and science.  They also spent less time using electronic devices.

Stress Levels Decreased

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Students that participate in outdoor learning tend to feel more motivated to learn and have lower stress levels. A study from the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health compared the stress levels of students taught in an outdoor setting and in an indoor classroom setting. There was a steady decline in stress levels for the outdoor learning group throughout the school year. In contrast, stress levels did not decrease for students in the classroom setting.

Improved Memory:

According to a study from the Journal of Adventure Education and Outdoor Learning, the results reveal that outdoor learning can improve long-term memory retention of course materials. Students that participated in outdoor classes recall both activities and contents better than students that were taught in indoor classes. Students also developed a positive attitude towards outdoor learning and valued the interaction they had with other pupils.

Promoting outdoor learning in schools not only help students lower stress and anxiety levels, but it can also help reduce sedentary behavior. Outdoor learning can allow students to become more physically active by increasing the amount of collaboration and interaction. It will generate flexible learning experiences that are not apparent in indoor learning spaces.

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