Outdoor Children's Camps Gwynn Oak MD

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Loyola University Women's Soccer Camps
(410) 617-5279
4501 North Charles St.
Baltimore, MD
 
Lakeside Day Camp
(410) 252-2046
Cockeysville, MD
 
Y of Central Maryland - Catonsville Family Center
(410) 747-9622
850 S. Rolling Road
Catonsville, MD
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Childcare, Classes, Indoors

Gerstung Inter-Sport
(410) 337-7781
1400 Coppermine Terrace
Baltimore, MD
Hours
Check website for class schedule.
Cost
Moderate
Ages
1And Up
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Indoors

Baltimore Clayworks
(410) 578-1919
5707 Smith Avenue
Baltimore, MD
Hours
Galleries are open Mon-Sat 10am-5pm
Cost
Program fees vary based on course. Galleries are free.
Ages
3And Up
Services Available
Camps, Classes

Millon Lacrosse Camp Baltimore
(877) 529-2267
Baltimore, MD
 
Carrie Murray Nature Center
(410) 396-0808
1901 Ridgetop Road
Gwynn Oak, MD
Cost
Free
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Indoors

API Sports & Fitness Camp at The Park School
(410) 472-3500
2425 Old Court Road,Suite 203
Pikesville, MD
Hours
Mon-Fri 8:45am-4:00pm
Cost
Summer Camp: $405/week; Wind Down the Summer Camp: $275/week
Ages
14-Jul
Services Available
Camps

Amazing Glaze
(410) 532-3144
1340 Smith Avenue
Baltimore, MD
Hours
Mon 11am-7pm; Tue-Thu 10am-8pm; Fri-Sun 11am-7pm
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Indoors

Beth Tfiloh
(410) 486-1900
3300 Old Court Road
Pikesville, MD
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Classes

Great Big World

Spending time immersed in nature helps produce happy, well-adjusted kids.

By Violet Snow

April 2010

I like to play indoors better ‘cause that’s where all the electrical outlets are—a fourth-grader in San Diego, quoted in Last Child in the Woods (Workman Publishing Company, 2005), in which journalist Richard Louv introduced the concept of “nature deficit disorder” in children.

Freewheeling outdoor play, from building stick shelters to cloudgazing, that was once common for children is much less available to today’s youth—and Louv says they’re missing something vital. He blames influences such as the loss of green space, an obsession with safety, educational pressures and the fascination of electronic media.

Numerous studies show that problems such as obesity, depression and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) improve when kids are exposed to nature. Cornell University researchers found that children with ready access to nature handled stress more successfully (Environment and Behavior 5/03). Scientists at the University of Southern California found that children who had park space within 500 meters of home tended to be less overweight (Association of Research Libraries conference, 4/09).

One recent University of Illinois study, involving children with ADHD, may help explain why interaction with nature is so important for all youngsters. It is based on attention restoration theory. Most of the time we use directed attention, which lets us focus on tasks but also fatigues with use. Involuntary attention is spontaneous and does not require effort. Natural settings often contain elements that engage involuntary attention, which allows directed attention to rest and recover.

In this study, children with ADHD took guided walks for 20 minutes through three different settings: a park, a quiet downtown area and a residential neighborhood. The youngsters’ capacity for concentration was tested after every walk; they scored higher after walking in the park than after the other outings (Journal of Attention Disorders 8/08).

Nature’s regenerative effects can be observed in all children, but they often need encouragement. The second edition of Last Child in the Woods (2008) lists 100 suggestions for connecting kids and nature, such as buying a truckload of dirt to play in; going for a family walk when the moon is full; buying field guides to birds, trees and flowers; planting a butterfly garden; and studying animal tracking.

Andrea Taylor, PhD, one of the University of Illinois researchers, believes that these study results offer clear implications for public policy. “We have to make nature accessible,” she says. “It’s not enough to have a massive park six blocks away. There should be small pockets of natural area near the home.

Louv’s book sparked the creation of a Children and Nature Network ( www.childrenandnature.org ) to promote awareness and push for legislation. Such calls for action are starting to bear f...

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