The Children & Nature Network published Thriving Through Nature: Fostering Children's Executive Function Skills. The 2015 report, by Chiara D'Amore, describes how time in nature from infancy through adolescence helps children to develop executive function skills. These skills include the ability to reason, plan, remember, use self-control and solve problems. Pages 10-12 provide a variety of nature-based activities that teachers of K-8 students may introduce outdoors. The report notes the recommendations of writer and educator David Sobel that "early childhood activities that foster a connection with the natural world should center on enhancing the developmental tendency toward empathy with nature, in middle childhood exploration should take precedence, and in adolescence social action should assume a more central role." Sobel explains these three stages of bonding with the earth in his article "Beyond Ecophobia" in Yes! Magazine.
This collection of resources provides inspiration and strategies for teachers to support outdoor learning opportunities.