Researchers, parents and educators have noticed an alarming trend: kids are spending more time indoors — often with technology in hand — and less time outside. Kids today get more than seven hours of screen time and spend less than 30 minutes outdoors on average per day, even as evidence continues to mount supporting the benefits of active outdoor time on children’s mental and physical health. Spending time in nature early in life also helps to engender environmentally friendly behaviors later in life. In 2012, NRPA joined the National Wildlife Federation in a commitment to get 10 million kids outdoors for active learning and play by 2015. As we reflect here on the progress of the 10 Million Kids Outdoors initiative to date, we encourage you to join the effort. Click here to learn more and register your agency to participate.
650: Number of park and recreation agencies and organizations that have committed to the 10 Million Kids Outdoors initiative to date.
5.5 million: Number of kids to date who have been engaged by the 10 Million Kids Outdoors campaign to spend time participating in outdoor nature-based programs.
12 million: Number of hours that participating children spent in nature during 2013, as reported by 10 Million Kids Outdoors participants.
49: Number of states with at least one park and recreation agency committed to 10 Million Kids Outdoors.
7.38: Average hours per day of children’s media consumption, including television, video games, music, computers and print media.
82: Percentage of American parents who think spending time in nature is very important for their children’s development.
11: Percentage of American children who visit a local park or natural area every day.
66: Percentage of children who report having had a meaningful experience in nature.
Sources: Kaiser Family Foundation’s Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8- to 18-year-olds, The Nature Conservancy/Nature Rocks Survey, The Nature Conservancy’s Connecting America’s Youth to Nature Report.