Amidst the COVID-19 outbreak, everyday life has changed and will continue to change for most people in the UK. Children may struggle with significant adjustments to their routines (e.g., schools and child care closures, social distancing, home confinement), which may interfere with their sense of structure, predictability, and security. Young people even infants and toddlers are keen observers of people and environments. They notice and react to stress in their parents and their carers, teachers, peers, and community members. They may ask direct questions about what is happening now, or what will happen in the future and may behave differently in reaction to strong feelings. Your children also may worry about their own safety and the safety of their loved ones, how they will get their basic needs met (e.g., food, shelter, clothing), and uncertainties for the future.
While most children will eventually return to their typical functioning when they receive consistent support from sensitive and responsive parents, others are at risk of developing significant mental health problems, including trauma-related stress, anxiety, and depression. Children with prior trauma or pre-existing mental, physical, or developmental problems—and those whose parents struggle with mental health disorders, substance misuse, or economic instability—are at especially high risk for emotional disturbances.
In addition to keeping children safe during and post COVID-19 pandemic, it is also important to care for their emotional, physical and social health. Because the outdoor environments play an important role in supporting all of these we need to consider our playgrounds and how they are used. Timotay can support you in this, with essential outdoor resources that will support, enhance and enable your children and staff to thrive.
Your children may be and have been attached to screens or glued to their electronic devices during the crisis. The benefits of reconnecting children and teachers with the outdoor world can offer both immediate and lifelong benefits. Being outdoors is essential and we can help, one of those benefits includes building up Vitamin D – an essential nutrient for our immune system, which can be achieved with children being outdoors.
At Timotay we are proud to have promoted this for 30 years and how spending time in nature and getting them outdoors daily during and after this global epidemic is vital.
Timotay believes that…
- It’s empowering, stimulating and essential for both teachers and students to teach and learn in an outdoor classroom.
- We need to be playful again. Reconnect with nature, spend time outside, climb trees, laugh and embrace and encourage the inner child within all of us.
- Children need to learn how to become stewards of our environment and do so while connecting with their community, their elders, and their peers.
- It’s all about planting those early “seeds of inspiration.”
We are here to support you… whether that is from helping you to develop existing space, creating new outdoor spaces or perhaps new outdoor classrooms. Click here to book your FREE consultation with an outdoor space/ playground expert