Australia is the sixth-largest country in the world and is the only continent that is a country. Australia’s oceanic grasp is the third largest, with three oceans and the Great Barrier Reef straddling its shores.
Native vegetation also covers the country at almost 7 million kilometres, a whopping 91% of the country! These landscapes are tied to Australian cultural identity that many tourists often imagine the country in terms of its land, water, flora and fauna.
Many people from all over the world have even considered emigrating to Australia. Many migrants from Asia, Africa and retirees from the United Kingdom have found that Australia’s great outdoors can benefit children.
The Great Outdoors
Technology has no doubt made our lives better, but the presence of smartphones and mobile devices have made kids stay indoors. Allan Tranter, of Nature Play, explained that playing in the outdoors has many effects on children, many of them beneficial. These include a stronger immune system, stress resistance, high physical activity, and reduced chances of behavioural disorders.
Australia’s cities and towns are often found near the coast, and so families even in big cities are never far away from the beach. They also have access to parks and wooded areas. Many Australians also enjoy the excellent climate of the continent. They take advantage of this by engaging in outdoor sports such as Australian rugby, surfing and football.
The Importance of Nature Play for Children
Playing is very important for child development, and there is no better place to play than in nature. Nature play encourages children to appreciate the more natural aspects of life: trees, fresh air, and sunlight.
Nature also encourages children to develop the skills of actively thinking and engaging with others, with adults being able to monitor them safely. It’s not only the cognitive side that children can benefit from but also their motor and physical skills while playing in the playground or climbing a tree.
It is no surprise that communities and environment play an active role in playing outdoors. Neighbourhoods in Victoria and Geelong have plenty of land for sale that are close to nature, with communities that cater to growing families and their children.
A child’s exposure and engagement to nature play could improve classroom behaviour, increase enthusiasm and motivation, as well as reduce the chances of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
Balancing Green and Screen Time
The more time children spend indoors, and with screens, they are more likely to develop a sedentary lifestyle. This can put them at risk for depression, loneliness and a diminished state of mental health.
It is important to balance screen time with valuable time spent in nature and outdoors. Technology has indeed become more expansive, but the benefits and outcomes of immersing into nature has no substitute.
Many families know how to take advantage of the great Australian outdoors, but they need to encourage children to go out and enjoy the benefits of the great Australian outdoors. So leave your gadgets behind and jump into the Ocean; that first dip will take your children farther into the world.