Children and Nature

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To enroll in this course, click HERE.


Children and Nature 

2 Hours

This is a non-CEU Course.  ** DEL MERIT Approved STARS ** 

Tuition: $19.00

Mobile Devices: This course MAY be mobile friendly. However, because every device is different, we are unable to guarantee compatibility.  Our student support staff is unable to provide technical support when students are attempting to use an iPad, tablet or cell phone to complete an online course. Use of an iPad, tablet, or cell phone is at your own risk. 

Washington STARS Credit: Curriculum and Learning Environment (2 hours)

Training Delivery Method:  Online

Content Focus Group:  

  • Toddlers
  • Preschool Age Children
  • Pre-Kindergarten Children
  • School-Age Children
  • Special Needs

Training Type: Annual Continuing Education Training

Training Level: 1

Training Language(s):      English

Description:  (2 hours) Online Self-Paced – Open Enrollment * New research actually shows that nature is essential for the brain. Even fleeting exposures to natural settings outside the windows can improve brain performance. One study demonstrates that just looking at a natural scene can improve scores on tests of attention and memory. Nature also has a calming effect on the brain. It can catch our attention without overloading our brain. Allowing children the time to nurture a connection with nature, we are granting them the freedom to develop intrinsic motivation - the ability to recognize what it is they want and to develop the desire and focus to achieve their goals. The experience of children and nature has to be part of daily life--the opportunity not only for playing in green space, but also the opportunity for being alone, having the chance to daydream, to wonder, to just be there.

Learning Objective:  

  • Understand the growing concern regarding children’s lack of engagement with nature and the possible fear of nature by family members.
  • Identify the negative health consequences that can result from the lack of children’s’ contact with nature.
  • Identify the physical, social, and psychological impacts of nature on child development.
  • Gain an understanding of the importance of nature play to the healthy development of the young child.
  • Become knowledgeable about and gain skills in developing and facilitating nature play experiences.
  • Identify ways to create a nature play environment indoors and outdoors to support the need for children to connect with the natural world.


 Currently Enrolled Students *


2) Student enrollments are activated between 8 am and 9 pm PST, 7 days a week. It can take up to 30 minutes after enrollment for your courses to become active for access. However, in most cases it is within 5 minutes.

3) Enrollments submitted between 9 pm and 8 am (during the night) will be processed by 8:30 am the next morning.

4) Check your email for instructions to start the training. You will receive an email with the word PASSWORD in the subject line. Click on the link in the email, and use the log-in credential provided to access the course.

5) Attention Mobile Device Users! This training is not tested on mobile devices or designed to be used on a mobile device. We are unable to provide technical support if you are attempting to use a mobile device (cell phone, tablet, or any other device other than a computer). And though many students may find that they are able to use their mobile device to complete the course, this training was developed to be done on a computer. Use of a mobile device is at your own risk.

6) This course uses multi-media video presentations. You will be required to view videos on your computer or mobile device in order to complete this course. Some students may find that they need to download Shockwave, Flash player or Java to view videos.

7) Some students may find that they have to update their internet browser, or Java, in order to log into the course, this is most often the case when trying to use Internet Explorer. We recommend Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome for the best results. Our student support staff is happy to assist students with troubleshooting should you encounter technical issues, and will provide common suggestions for solving problems that occur when normal browser maintenance or application updates need to occur.

8) Cancellations and refunds requested within 72 hours after enrollment are available for courses/programs that have NOT been accessed. Refunds and Cancellations will be charged a 20% cancellation fee.

9) Once you log in and start a course, a refund is not available. After 72 hours, the payment credit can be transferred to a different training or to a new student if the training was not started by the original student for up to 30 days after enrollment.

10) Refunds are not available after 72 hours.

11) Refunds are not available for courses/programs that have been started.

12) Washington students must submit an evaluation form with a valid STARS ID number upon completion of the course and a certificate will be emailed to you. Certificates are prepared throughout the day, 7 days a week.

13) Completed courses are recorded in MERIT Monday through Friday, throughout the day continuously, between 8 am and 3 PM. If you complete your training in the evening or over the weekend, it will be recorded on the next business day during those hours.

14) During the last two weeks of December, expect longer processing times for enrollment and certificates due to the high volume enrollments and completed trainings during the year end rush. We recommend enrolling and completing your training prior to the end of December whenever possible.

25 Reviews Hide Reviews Show Reviews

  • 5
    Just a really great training. Enjoyed it tremendously.

    Posted by Julie on 12th Feb 2016

    This was an excellent training!! I really enjoyed it and will use some of the examples in the classroom.
    It is very sad to think that Nature experiences are a thing of the past but I would like to hope that parents and families take back nature.

  • 5
    I loved this training.

    Posted by Brett on 8th Feb 2016

    I was very interested in the topic and learned a lot. Some facts were alarming, but I can see that there are organizations that are trying to make changes. I'm thankful that I work for a woman that sees the importance of outdoor play.

  • 5
    I loved this class and felt like it was worthwhile information.

    Posted by Tamara on 4th Feb 2016

    I liked the videos and the ability to go back and repeat information Ewing taught.

  • 5
    great training!

    Posted by Janine on 29th Nov 2015

    I enjoyed the readings...but, I also enjoyed the video clips. it was good to see different ways to set up my classroom to be more 'nature related' . I also enjoyed seeing the ideas for playground things.

  • 5
    The videos were amazing

    Posted by Erica on 11th Aug 2015

    The youtube videos were amazing. I loved the videos of just observing the children play in a nature based playground. It allowed me to come up with my own understanding of the topic

  • 5
    Very important, interesting and useful!

    Posted by Andrea on 17th Jun 2015

    I found this topic to be very important, interesting and useful! I enjoyed the videos as am a visual learner.

  • 5
    I love it!!!

    Posted by Nancy on 17th Jun 2015

    I really enjoyed the video segments and was so pleased to find out that there are some great groups out there that address a solution to the lack of natural experiences for children and families quite common in this media-based world. It would be so fun to be able to design a playground like the one shown in the video (to assist children with ASD and other disabilities) - I loved it!

  • 5
    I love the training

    Posted by Kenny on 17th Jun 2015

    I love the training & contents of the course. Did learn a lot myself and recommend every one to go through this.

  • 5
    Thank you.

    Posted by Ryan on 13th May 2015

    The videos were great. All speakers had in depth knowledge of topic. The final video where the kids were just playing, that all, was just kind of that A-ha moment. That's were they should love to be and what they need daily...Playing and exploring.

    This has been my favorite stars training to date. I love nature anyway, and go for nature walks with my kiddos I work with plus my own children. But the statistics in this fast paced electronic world was a wake up call.