Guest Post By Cassandra Lomax
The learning environment has a direct impact on students’ learning and their behavior. A study done by German and Norwegian researchers found that students who learned outside had far lower levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, than those that did their school work inside. They also had a greater degree of learning retention, allowing them to pick up new subjects quicker and retain the information that they had been taught. When you’re homeschooling your children, there is great benefit to getting some fresh air into your learning environment.
Take your class outside
When the weather is mild, there is nothing stopping you from taking your lessons outside into the back yard, or even to a local park. You don’t have to always be sitting at a desk in order to learn effectively. In fact, a change in environment will not only make the learning experience more interactive and fun, but it will also benefit your children on a social level. Research done by Swedish scientists found that those children who regularly studied outside interacted with their peers on a higher level. They also remembered the learning material better, many months after, in comparison to those students who had learned the same topics indoors in a classroom environment.
Let fresh air through your home
In the winter months, or if the weather outside is rainy, then you might not always be able to head outside for lessons. That doesn’t mean that you can’t open the windows and let the fresh air flow through your home. Danish researchers from Aarhus University found that when students had fresh air circulating in the classroom, they performed 7% better than those who were in a stagnant environment. Opening your windows will also help you prevent your home from becoming susceptible to mold and damp. Mold can cause serious health issues in young people, and you don’t want it in your homeschooling environment. Ventilation is key to a healthy learning environment.
Combine exercise with learning
Another great way to get some fresh air whilst learning is to combine it with exercise. Exercise has been proven to help improve memory and concentration. It is particularly good for the parts of the brain that involve verbal memory. Instead of sitting at a desk learning French verbs or English grammar, get out and have a walk in the fresh air, and discuss your teaching material on the way. Combine exercise with your homeschooling experience, and you might be surprised by the results.
Your homeschooling experience doesn’t have to be stuck in a stuffy classroom. Get some fresh air around you, and you could improve the learning and have fun at the same time.