Boys need adventure. From a young age, it’s vital for them to be able to explore the outdoors and feed their imaginations. In a world that increasingly operates online and indoors, the danger is that children can lose connection with the natural world – and this has serious future implications.
“For a new generation, nature is more abstraction than reality. Increasingly, nature is something to watch, to consume, to wear – to ignore.” Richard Louv, Last Child in the Woods
The Australian Curriculum recognises the importance of outdoor learning and provides a strong rationale for its place in education. Based on this information, here are four reasons why the great outdoors is a great teacher.
He will become self-reliant and a leader
Being outdoors is the perfect environment to foster self-reliance and leadership skills in your son. In this context, he will develop the skill to make his own decisions based on changing external factors around him. Spending time outdoors will increase your son’s ability to connect actions with future consequences – qualities he will need for future leadership roles.
He will develop an adventurous spirit
There is nothing better for developing an adventurous spirit than being in nature. Your son’s physical confidence will grow rapidly if he regularly spends time outdoors. The more confident he is, the more comfortable and adventurous he will become in this environment. The 21st century workplace increasingly demands people who are confident, innovative and creative. Although technology can support your son in developing these traits, his physical confidence needs to support this development – mind, body and spirit.
He will learn to take calculated risks
Learning how to handle natural terrains such as unsealed mountain treks, rivers and rainforests will help your son develop the ability to take calculated risks. Risk-taking is important for children and adults. The trick is to make sure they have the ability to weigh up the pros and cons before taking the leap.
He will have better health and wellbeing
If your son attends a school with outdoor education programs, he may be lucky enough to have participated in overnight camps. Being immersed in nature for an extended period of time helps our minds to slow down and become more reflective. If you can encourage your son to regularly spend time outdoors to clear his mind, this will have great benefits for his mental health and general sense of wellbeing.
Beyond the points above, perhaps the most obvious reason to stay connected to nature is our beautiful but fragile planet. Without connection to our natural world, how will we – or our children – know how to look after it for future generations?
Our Glengarry campus offers a unique outdoor education experience to all Year 9 Scots students. Learn more by downloading a copy of the Glengarry handbook.