THE IMPORTANCE OF NATURE IN EARLY CHILDHOOD AND PRESCHOOL EDUCATION
University of Pula (CROATIA)
About this paper:
Conference name: 13th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 5-6 July, 2021
Location: Online Conference
The aim of this research is to investigate the perception preschool teachers have on the pedagogy of nature, kindergarten in the woods and the sedentary lifestyle of preschool children.
The paper presents the data from the survey that involved 259 preschool teachers with a questionnaire of 12 questions. The main questions are on the time spent in nature by children, on the presence of diseases that can be linked to sedentary life, the attitudes regarding the importance of spending time in nature and the quantity of time children spend in nature.
The results show that educators give importance to children spending time in nature. The majority of teachers are aware of the importance of nature for the development of children. Our respondents noted an increase in diseases in children. There are more disorders such as obesity, attention disorder, or in any case, diseases that may be the result of a sedentary lifestyle.
Children need to be stimulated to adequately develop their senses. By spending time in nature children have a more holistic development and feel emotive connection with the nature. By being emotionally attached to the natural world, children will be more likely to protect it as adults. Our study shows that the majority of preschool teachers believe that today's children spend less time in nature both within and outside the kindergarten. Alongside this, teachers say they have noticed an increase in children's illnesses that can be related to sedentary life.
Keywords: Nature, kindergarten in the woods, movement, sedentary lifestyle, preschool child.