The alarm goes off, and another school day has begun. Often it’s a rush to get everyone ready and out the door on time. Then it’s off to school for a day full of learning, then home again to complete homework assignments. Before your students gets started on those assignments, however, encourage them to take a walk through the woods with you.
Besides providing valuable one-on-one time with your student for talking about how the day went, problems that may have come up, and interesting things that happened at school, taking a nature walk before starting homework has many other benefits. This article by Business Insider discusses some them. Taking a walk in nature can help:
- Improve short-term memory
- Reduce stress
- Eliminate mental fatigue
- Decrease anxiety and depression
- Reduce the risk of nearsightedness
- Improve your ability to focus
- Perform better when working on creative tasks
Is your student pressed for time? Maybe he or she doesn’t think there’s time to take a walk. Even a 20-mintue nature walk will help your student regain mental clarity after a full day at school.
Do you live in a big city? Some studies have shown that walking down city streets just doesn’t provide the same benefits as walking in nature. Instead of walking through town, go to a park with a lot of trees to get some of the same benefits as walking through a forest.
For more information on the benefits of taking nature walks, check out Florence Williams’ book The Nature Fix.
Image by S. Hermann & F. Richter