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Boost children's love for the outdoors with Pathways for Play

In today’s world, most children live in urban cities far from nature. As lot sizes continue to shrink – backyard green space becomes sparse. For some kids, a trip to their local conservation authority can be the first time they develop a greater understanding and appreciation for nature. 

While trails still exist in the suburbs, country and even in the city, only a small portion of children are making use of them. Numerous studies state that being in nature greatly improves physical and mental health, but how do we get children interested?

PlayCore, whose mission is to advance play through research, programs and partnerships, believes the best way for children to connect with their natural environment is to combine learning with play. PlayCore has teamed up with the Natural Learning Initiative to offer Pathways for Play: Best Practices Guidelines to integrate play - critical for children's health - into walkable, bikeable, shared use community pathway networks infused with "play pockets”.

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Pathways for Play: Innovative way to bring play into nature

There’s nothing like getting outdoors for a refreshing walk in nature to de-stress and improve your health, both physically and mentally. When communities offer natural environments such as parks, trails and other green spaces, people are more likely to walk and be physically active.

According to Active Healthy Kids Canada, the amount of children enjoying the benefits of walking is on the decline. When it comes to walking to school, studies found that while 58 per cent of parents walked to school when they were young, only 28 per cent of their children do so today.