What books can I read to learn more about children & outdoor play?

How to Raise a Wild Child

The average North American child now spends about seven hours a day staring at screens and mere minutes engaged in unstructured play outdoors, a dramatic transformation within the past generation. Yet recent research indicates that experiences in nature are essential for healthy growth. Regular exposure to nature can help relieve stress, depression, and attention deficits. It can reduce bullying, combat obesity, and boost academic scores. Most critical of all, abundant time in natural settings seems to yield long-term benefits in kids� cognitive, emotional, and social development. To date, no book has offered teachers, parents, and other caregivers the necessary tools to engender a meaningful, lasting connection between children and the natural world. How to Raise a Wild Child is a timely and engaging antidote, showing how kids� connection to nature changes as they mature, and empowering grown-ups to be strong mentors. Distilling the latest research in multiple disciplines, Scott Sampson reveals how adults can help kids fall in love with nature�enlisting technology as an ally, taking advantage of urban nature, and instilling a deep sense of place along the way. [From the inside flap]

Balanced and Barefoot

In this important book, a pediatric occupational therapist and founder of TimberNook shows how outdoor play and unstructured freedom of movement are vital for children’s cognitive development and growth, and offers tons of fun, engaging ways to help ensure that kids grow into healthy, balanced, and resilient adults. 

Balanced and Barefoot offers a refreshingly straightforward approach that counters the pressures many well-intentioned parents feel in raising children today. It’s about backing off and giving children the space to do what they naturally do—to explore and figure out the world, to make decisions, and use their imagination. Being outdoors allows children to learn about themselves, gain confidence and flexibility, learn to problem solve, and get along with others. These are all traits they need for healthy development. I recommend this book for every parent looking to raise an independent, caring, resilient and confident child.”
—Tovah P. Klein, PhD, director of the Barnard College Center for Toddler Development, and author of How Toddlers Thrive

Last Child in the Woods

In his groundbreaking work about the staggering divide between children and the outdoors, journalist and child advocate Richard Louv directly links the absence of nature in the lives of today's wired generatoin to some of the most disturbing childhood trends: the rise in obesity, attention disorders, and depression. This is the first book to bring together a body of research indicating that direct exposure to nature is essential for healthy childhood development and for the physical and emotional helath of children and adults. More than just raising an alarm, Louv offers practical solutions to heal the broken bond.

Coyotes Guide to Connecting with Nature

Coyote's Guide to Connecting with Nature has been hailed by Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods, as "good medicine for nature-deficit disorder." The first edition quickly became the essential guidebook for mentors, parents, teachers, camp directors, and others wanting fun and exciting ways to connect children (and adults!) with nature.

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.