Archive for December 17th, 2009

Nature & Child Development, 2

Thursday, December 17th, 2009

This is Passport to Texas

To unwind from a demanding day at work or school, a simple change of scenery may do the trick.

Research and theory suggest nature is very supportive of human functioning.

Dr. Andrea Faber Taylor studies the connection between our environment and behavior at the University of Illinois. And her research has revealed what we’ve thought all along: nature, even if it’s just a small patch of green, can renew our minds.

Even a view of a green space is beneficial. So, it suggests to us that nature, and even a little bit of trees and plants makes it [a place that’s] restorative.

So what does nature offer that other settings or activities and don’t? Attention restoration theory provides an explanation.

Environments that might be restorative or helpful have characteristics that engage our attention, but in a very gentle way. For an environment to be restorative there’s room in your mind for reflective thought. A space maybe doesn’t need to be huge if it has enough richness and enough depth to engage our minds and hold our attention, but again, in a gentle way.

Taylor says video games and television are too riveting to be restorative. So, tonight: instead of the TV, try a walk in the park and see how much more refreshed you feel.

That’s our show… For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.