For those involved with childhood education, you may remember a time when kids (including you) would race outside the moment the school bell rung for lunch. After hours of being cooped up indoors, you’d relish the chance to feel the sun on your face and the wind in your hair, messing around in the playground.
However, with the advent of the computer, and the subsequent spread of portable devices, kids no longer have to seek ways of amusing themselves outdoors.
With easy access to games and apps as well as videos on smartphones and tablets, it’s easy for kids of all ages to become engrossed in the world behind the screen and forget to breathe the fresh air outdoors.
Australia becoming an indoor nation
Not everyone appears to be worried over the amount of time kids are spending indoors with their eyes glued to their devices – is there really cause for concern?
Children today are spending more time indoors than any other generation in history, according to Nature Play South Australia, also reminding us of CEO of Nature Play WA Griffin Longley’s, comment; “the Average Australian child spends less time outside than a maximum security prisoner”.
Nature Play SA also goes on to report that 87 percent of Aussie children are spending more time playing indoors than outdoors – spending less than two hours a day outside.
“In South Australia, children spend an average of 4.5 hours a day in front of a screen, exceeding the national average by half an hour,” the organisation says.
Overcoming outdoor aversion
According to a poll by The Nature Conservancy, there are a wide range of reasons why kids today aren’t spending as much time outdoors as we perhaps did. The results showed that 80 per cent of young people cited being uncomfortable being outdoors due to factors such as the heat and bugs.
Just because the sun is strong in our country however, doesn’t mean that children should be relegated to lunchtimes indoors. With Skyspan™’s range of shades and umbrellas, kids can be shielded from the heat, as well as the harmful UV rays that can continue to be a risk even during the winter months for some areas of the country.
At Skyspan™ we’ve kitted out schools across Australia as well as in the USA, providing shelter for kids come rain and come shine. From full custom structures to our umbrellas and Hypar range which are fully retractable, meaning they can be folded away over winter and put up again with relative ease.