Research

Check out some of the research on the benefits of unstructured outdoor play. We'll continue to add new articles so it's worth coming back to this page from time to time!

Shaping Spaces for Gen Z - International Forum Report

6 Jun 2017

In summary, the Shaping Spaces for Gen-Z Urban Thinkers Campus, Canberra, Australia on 8th March 2017 strongly endored three priority actions: 1.    Safe access, well-designed routes around schools  2.    Play infrastructure for all ages/co -design best practic…

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EVERY EXPERIENCE MATTERS

30 May 2017

An evidence based research report on the role of learning outside the classroom for children’s whole development from birth to eighteen years has been published by FACE.…

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Helsinki alert of biodiversity and health

12 May 2017

Urban living in built environments, combined with the use of processed water and food, may not provide the microbial stimulation necessary for a balanced development of immune function.…

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CLIMBING TREES: GETTING AUSSIE KIDS BACK OUTDOORS

30 Jun 2016

The research shows that there has been a dramatic shift in childhood activity from outdoor play to indoor activity in the space of one generation.  As well as playing outdoors less often, the research shows that the nature of children's outdoor activity in Australia is also changing.…

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Position Statement on Active Outdoor Play

31 May 2016

A diverse, cross-sectorial group of partners, stakeholders and researchers, collaborated to develop an evidence-informed Position Statement on active outdoor play for children aged 3–12 years. The Position Statement was created in response to practitioner, academic, legal, insurance and public…

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What is the relationship between Risky Outdoor Play and Health in Children? A Systematic Review

31 May 2016

Risky outdoor play has been associated with promoting children’s health and development, but also with injury and death. Risky outdoor play has diminished over time, concurrent with increasing concerns regarding child safety and emphasis on injury prevention. We sought to conduct a systematic…

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THE DIRT ON DIRT: HOW GETTING DIRTY OUTDOORS BENEFITS KIDS

9 May 2016

“Don’t track mud in the house!” “Wash your hands before dinner!” “You can’t play with that, you don’t know where it’s been!” Parents wear those phrases out like old blue jeans put through the spin cycle too many times. Many have come to…

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BEYOND BLUE TO GREEN

9 May 2016

The benefits of contact with nature for mental health and well-being Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over civilised people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity; that mountain parks and reservations are useful not only as fountains of…

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NO FEAR: GROWING UP IN RISK AVERSE SOCIETY

9 May 2016

No fear: growing up in a risk averse society argues that childhood is being undermined by the growth of risk aversion. This restricts children's play, limits their freedom of movement, corrodes their relationships with adults and constrains their exploration of physical, social and virtual world…

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RESURRECTING FREE PLAY IN YOUNG CHILDREN: LOOKING BEYOND FITNESS AND FATNESS TO ATTENTION, AFFILIATION AND AFFECT

9 May 2016

We have observed that the nature and amount of free play in young children has changed. Our purpose in this article is to demonstrate why play, and particularly active, unstructured, outdoor play, needs to be restored in children's lives. We propose that efforts to increase physical activity in…

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