Designing Playgrounds for Physical Activity (03-18-14)

Creating playgrounds that encourage physical activity is one way to help keep young people from becoming obese.  At one test site, adding movable/recycled materials to a schoolyard increased the physical activity levels of children 5 to 12 over the course of a school year relative to students at another, comparable school where movable/recycled materials weren’t placed in schoolyards for the youngsters to play with during class breaks.  The movable/recycled materials added “included milk crates, swimming noodles, buckets, cardboard boxes, tyre tubes, pipes, vacuum hoses, plastic w

More Evidence Greening Schoolyards a Good Idea (03-07-14)

Previous research has shown that educational advantages accrue when vegetation is visible through school windows (for example, see Designing for Play).  Kelz and her colleagues “investigated the influence of a redesign (greening) of a [middle school] schoolyard on pupils’ [average age 14.4 years] physiological stress, psychological well-being, and executive functioning.” Research was conducted at three schools in rural Austria and “The renovated schoolyard significantly diminished pupils’ physiolog

Classrooms with a View

Can classroom window views improve grades, or do they just make students feel better?