Outdoor Children's Camps Pleasant Grove UT

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The Christa McAuliffe Space Education Center
(801) 785-8713
95 North 400 East,Central Elementary School
Pleasant Grove, UT
Hours
Varies
Cost
Varies; see website for details.
Ages
7And Up
Services Available
Camps, Classes

John Hutchings Museum of Natural History
(801) 768-7180
55 North Center Street
Lehi, UT
Hours
Tue-Sat 11am-5pm; Also open by appointment
Cost
Adults $4; Seniors/Students $3; Children (ages 3-12) $3; Families (up to 6 people) $14
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Indoors, Tourist Spots

Farm Country
(801) 768-2300
3003 North Thanksgiving Way
Lehi, UT
Hours
Apr-Oct Mon-Sat 10am-8pm; Nov-Mar Mon-Sat 10am-6pm
Cost
$3.50; Children (2 & under) free
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Stores, Tourist Spots

Museum of Ancient Life
(801) 768-2300
2929 North Thanksgiving Way
Lehi, UT
Hours
Mon-Sat 10am-8pm
Cost
Exhibits pass Adults $10; Seniors & Children (3-12) $8
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Entertainment, Indoors, Tourist Spots

Utah Valley Sport Fencing
(801) 765-1603
728 South State
Orem, UT
Hours
Varies. See website.
Cost
Six week session $50 & up; Parties $50 & up
Ages
5And Up
Services Available
Camps, Classes

Kindermusik with Rebecca Hainsworth
(801) 785-4282
Lindon, UT
Hours
Varies by class; see website.
Cost
Moderate
Ages
0-7
Services Available
Camps, Classes

Gymcats at the Point
(801) 674-3808
3300 West Pilgrims Loop Road
Lehi, UT
Hours
See website for schedule
Cost
Annual registration $35/student or $50/family
Ages
1And Up
Services Available
Camps, Childcare, Classes, Indoors, Leagues & Teams

Thanksgiving Point
(801) 768-2300
3003 Thanksgiving Way
Lehi, UT
Hours
Mon-Sat. Hours vary by venue; check website for details.
Cost
Varies by activity; see website for details
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Entertainment, Indoors, Stores, Tourist Spots

Kids Village
(801) 235-9999
1641 North State Street
Orem, UT
Hours
Mon-Fri 8am-4pm
Cost
Call for information
Ages
9-Feb
Services Available
Camps, Kids Resources, Schools

The Little Gym - Orem
(801) 226-3800
150 West Center Street
Orem, UT
Cost
Moderate to expensive; takes checks or major credit cards
Ages
0-12
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Indoors

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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