It seems everywhere you go, people are staring at screens. From the grocery store and restaurants to an airplane or car ride, everyone is entertaining themselves on their own electronic devices. While this is a part of the world we live in today, and you can’t hide underneath a bucket, staring at screens at an early age is not ideal for young children, from infants up through teenage years.
Compass Child Care is an early childhood education center that offers infant care up through preschool. We focus on fostering your child’s creativity and preparing them for their school years though offering innovative and foundational educational programs that your child will not only engage with but will love as well. We have locations in Coon Rapids, Blaine, Isanti, and soon in East Bethel. Below, we’ll go over some of the benefits of outside play. Contact us today for a tour!
BENEFITS OF OUTSIDE PLAY
Everyone is aware that obesity, including childhood obesity, is a problem in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 18.5% of children ages 2-19 are obese in the United States, or about 13.7 million. This is largely due to two factors. One, kids and adults lead a relatively sedentary life in the developed world. From school to work, we spend the majority of the day in front of screens, instead of tilling the fields like 150 years ago. Two, the prevalence of fast food, unhealthy food, and processed food, which was just not available 150 years ago. These foods are full of saturated fats and sugars, all of which our body stores very easily when we consume them in excess.
Outside play is a great way to get kids active and burn calories. From playing games and tag with their friends to playing on the monkey bars at the playground, the outdoors is full of adventures and excitement to keep kids moving and in good health.
Learn About Nature
Nature is overwhelmingly beautiful, even in the harshest of climates. From watching the leaves fall in autumn to watching the snowflakes cover your front yard, nature enriches your mind, brings you peace, and soothes your soul in ways just not possible otherwise. Children can learn about the food web when they see a spider catch an insect, see earthworms decompose the soil and organic matter they eat, and watch birds feed their young in the spring. When children walk in the woods and hear chipmunks, climb a mountain or go on a hike and experience the rocks beneath their feet, or frolic in the ocean blue and taste the salt water on their lips, they learn about the world around them and ultimately their role in this world. They also gain an appreciation for nature and a desire to care for this planet that is their home.
If you’ve ever tried to build a fort yourself, you know it can be quite boring. However, you bring in your friends to help, and soon you are fending off a pirate attack and building lookout points. Compass Child Care notes that outside play fosters socialization opportunities. Plus, it gives kids a chance to discover their strengths. Perhaps a child discovers they can run fast, lift heavy stones, or solve a problem. Outside play offers opportunities for kids to work together, to learn to share and cooperate, and to learn how to treat others. It’s also a place where kids who might not fit in, do fit in and are accepted more readily than in a more structured play environment.
Teaches Life Lessons
Humans learn in many ways, one of which is by trying and failing. Nature offers a lot of opportunities for kids to try new things and take risks. This is a skill that is crucial to learn as a child that can be translated over as an adult. For example, all of the greatest inventions were preceded by failures and risk taking. For example, if Bill Gates hadn’t quite Harvard, would Microsoft exist today? Many thought he was crazy at the time, but he has made our world infinitely easier to live in. In nature, you can climb a tree to try to reach the highest branch, climb a mountain to reach the pinnacle, or cross a stream on a tree, balancing the entire way. Kids may succeed or may fail, but it is guaranteed they will learn from it and be a better person because of it.
Improves Overall Health and Well-being
Compass Child Care notes that when kids engage in outside play, they are exposed to the sun. Our bodies need the sun in order to make vitamin D, which helps our bodies have strong bones and a healthy immune system. The sun also improves our mood and helps our circadian rhythm, or our sleep cycle. For children, getting enough sleep is crucial to their overall development and growth. Plus, outside kids can breath fresh air and release stress through play.
CHOOSE COMPASS CHILD CARE FOR YOUR CHILD’S EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION
Compass Child Care takes a holistic approach to your child’s education, beginning from infancy through the preschool years. Every child receives age-appropriate curriculum designed specifically to give them the skills they will need to be successful in the future. We teach music, movement, art and fine motor skills, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), dramatic and imaginative play, and promote social and sensory skills. Children at this age are sponges, soaking up everything around them, and our mission is to expose them to as much learning as possible.
Compass Child Care offers many locations to better serve your needs, including Coon Rapids, Blaine, Isanti, and soon East Bethel. We choose early learning activities that build upon one another as your child moves through our early childhood programs. We focus on language development as infants and toddlers and carry this through early literacy programs as a preschooler. We want to positively shape your child’s learning and give them the skills to overcome challenges, all while giving your child the free time (including outside play) to begin to discover themselves and truths about the world around them.
Every day we strive to foster positive self-esteem, provide opportunities for creative expression, and stimulate cognitive problem-solving. Our innovative STEM program focuses on introducing your child to the fundamental concepts of science, technology, engineering, and math from an early age with the goal of making sure your child is comfortable with these concepts as they move forward in their school years. From learning to sharing and responsibilities like cleaning up to conflict resolution, your child’s days at Compass Child Care will be full, fun, and exciting. Contact us today for enrollment information or to take a tour!