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ERIC Number: EJ936592
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 16
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-1533-8916
Outdoor-Based Play and Reconnection to Nature: A Neglected Pathway to Positive Youth Development
Mainella, Fran P.; Agate, Joel R.; Clark, Brianna S.
New Directions for Youth Development, n130 p89-104 Sum 2011
Modern American society faces challenges that are much different from those that the early pioneers of American play face. Play deprivation, or lack of play, is the result of children's unwillingness to choose free and spontaneous outdoor play such as that which occurs in parks and other natural settings. A lack of play in natural settings leads to not only play deprivation but also what Louv terms "nature deficit disorder." Nature deficit disorder is a disconnection with the environment that stems from the current generation's tendency to focus on built and engineered entertainment rather than the natural world. In this article, the authors discuss factors that contribute to children's play deprivation and lack of association with nature. They also discuss the consequences of play deprivation and present evidence of lack of outdoor-based play. Then, they explain why outdoor-based play and reconnection to nature are essential, and outline some of the programs and initiatives that seek to implement this public health strategy through education and engagement. (Contains 45 notes.)
Jossey-Bass. Available from John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030-5774. Tel: 800-825-7550; Tel: 201-748-6645; Fax: 201-748-6021; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A