Nature play initiatives: a study of nature play areas and programs at environmental education organizations in the United States





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This study examines how nature play is encouraged at environmental education organizations in the United States. The idea of free play in natural environments has found its way into different movements and trends in recent years due to Richard Louv (2005) and others. Most professionals in the field now understand the value of allowing children to explore nature freely through play, and initiatives have been developed based on sound theory and research. However, implementation and management of current nature play initiatives have not been closely examined. Data was collected from an online survey and case studies were conducted to discover how different organizations have successfully implemented initiatives such as nature play areas and programs. The researcher intends to add new information to the national discussion on nature play and provide a resource to professionals in the environmental education field who wish to encourage nature play at their organization.

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