Conducting lessons outdoors amidst natural greenery can help students become more attentive and engaged during classes, a study has found.
Scientists have known for a while that natural outdoor environments can have a variety of beneficial effects on people.
People exposed to parks, trees or wildlife can experience benefits such as physical activity, stress reduction, rejuvenated attention and increased motivation.
In children, studies have shown that even a view of greenery through a classroom window could have positive effects on students’ attention.
Researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign in the US hypothesized that an outdoor lesson in nature would result in increased classroom engagement in indoor lessons held immediately afterward.
“We wanted to see if we could put the nature effect to work in a school setting,” said Ming Kuo, from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
For the study published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology, the researchers tested their hypothesis in third graders (9-10 years old) in a school.