Study Reveals Link Between Screen Time And ‘weak Communication Skills’ For Kids – But Outdoor Play Is The Answer
GO Outdoors is encouraging families to step outside this spring, as outdoor play can reduce the negative impacts of screen time on children by 20 per cent
Children who have lots of screen time are more likely to have poor communication skills, according to new research – but outdoor play may be the solution.
Researchers at Osaka University in Japan found that outdoor play mitigates the negative effects of screen time on daily living skills by 20%.
The study, published in the journal JAMA Paediatrics, stated that tots with a higher amount of screen time are more likely to have weaker communication skills at age four.
To help children step away from the screens and improve their development, GO Outdoors is encouraging families to prioritise outdoor play as a simple solution to mitigate some of these negative impacts of screen time.
Rich Ewbank, Content Manager GO Outdoors, said “We recognise that spending time outdoors can be hugely beneficial for our wellbeing, and that’s no different for children, who are spending more time than ever indoors and in front of screens.
“The outdoors can be a tool for developing communication and practical skills and spending more time outside can help to kickstart a lifelong love for adventure from a young age.
“Since many children have yet to discover their love for the outdoors, here are our Top 10 exciting activities for the family to enjoy this spring.”
- Family bike rides
Family bike rides are a great way to keep active and adventure further outdoors. As well as numerous health benefits, you’ll also get the chance to explore new areas, regardless of the weather.
- Wildlife walks
Local walks are a great way to spot exciting wildlife. Why not take a notepad or camera to see how many animals you can spot on your next walk? Who knows what you’ll uncover when venturing through wildlife.
- Go climbing
Climbing is fun at any age. Whether you’re traversing the bottom branches of a tree or skipping over rocks, climbing is an amazing adventure accessible to anyone.
- Skimming stones
A childhood staple, this activity may be lost on the current generation of children. Teach young ones how to skim stones at the local lake or river, challenging them to increase their number of skips each time.
- Get creative with nature
As the seasons start to change and flowers begin to bloom, the colours, textures and sights of spring offer inspiration for artistic children. You could create a scrapbook from the things you find on a woodland walk, draw bugs you uncover on your adventure, or use flowers and leaves to create artwork.
- Explore your local area
Engage your family in your local area by doing some research on exciting things to see and do near you. You may uncover the area’s hidden history or an interesting myth connected to where you live, helping little ones love where they’re growing up even more.
- Build a secret den
Create a secret woodland base with your family, scavenging for the best building materials. Children will feel challenged to construct their dream den, plus they’ll have a wilderness hideout to play in afterwards.
- Snap the best of spring
Capturing spring adventures is easy! You don’t need an expensive camera, just take a snap of the things you find and the memories you make in the great outdoors. You can even challenge the kids to create the silliest poses.
- Learn about the weather
One thing that’s guaranteed about the British weather in spring is that it’s unpredictable. This season is a great chance to learn more about the weather and how the seasons can affect it, and what better way to do so than by getting outdoors?
- Give nature a home
Cold weather and unpredictable rain can cause nature to hunker down in your garden. Why not try creating a bug hotel, putting up a bird feeder and creating corridors for creatures to pass in and around your garden easily.
To ensure that children are wrapped up and ready to spend time outdoors, check out GO Outdoors’ children’s clothing and footwear range: https://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/childrens/