Tuesday, June 07, 2005

IT’S ONLY NATURAL: Outdoor education programs for kids boost self-esteem and increase receptivity to conflict resolution

Environmental studies improve cooperation among sixth graders.The out-of-doors apparently offers benefits well beyond fresh air and scenery, as a story in the Los Angeles Times today reports.

According to a recent study of at-risk fifth- and sixth graders in schools in rural areas in Fresno, Los Angeles, and San Diego, California, children who participated in a week-long outdoors environmental studies program not only improved their science scores and showed a great appreciation for the environment, but also demonstrated increased confidence, were more cooperative, and showed a greater openness to conflict resolution.

The study, Effects of Outdoor Education Programs for Children in California, was conducted by the American Institutes for Research on behalf of the California Department of Education.

You can view the executive summary of the study by clicking here.