Exploring the Great Outdoors (No Matter Where You Live!)


Did you know that the average American child spends about 44 hours each week in front of electronic media? And with school out and long summer days ahead, it’s all too easy to turn to screens for entertainment. But there’s no show on earth as fun, challenging, or immersive as the great outdoors.

Whether you live in the bustling city, a quiet suburb, or in the middle of rural America, there are incredible benefits to getting outside. In fact, studies show that spending time in nature helps girls feel more confident and capable overall. Girl Scouts’ Chief Girl and Parent Expert, Dr. Andrea Bastiani Archibald teamed up with Fatima Shama, Executive Director of the Fresh Air Fund, to talk about all that Mother Nature has to offer to your family. Check out these major takeaways, then watch the video to learn even more!

It doesn’t have to be a big production. While camping, hiking, and other outdoor adventures certainly have their advantages, so do seemingly smaller outings, like a simple trip to the playground, a run in the backyard sprinklers, or even simply a walk around the block.

You can separate girls from their screens. If she’s riding her bike, climbing a rock wall, or planting vegetables she not only won’t have free hands to scroll through social media—she’ll probably be too engrossed in her current activity to even think of it! But keep in mind that there are fun outdoor-centric apps that might be fun to explore with your girl on your nature trips. Using her phone as a compass or to explore nature photography are great ways to incorporate tech into the experience.

You’ve got people who want to help. Many local libraries, museums, and community centers across the country offer fun outdoor programs for kids during the summer. If you’re not sure what your options are, or what spaces might be safest for your kids to play in, reach out!

This post originally appeared on GirlScouts.org