Naturally Wired: Getting Outside in the Digital Age
What does it take to get people off their phones and into the outdoors? Research has shown the deleterious effects of electronics on weight, sleep and cognitive development in children, who in 2018 spent nearly four hours a day glued to their screens. Other barriers such as income and proximity to nature make access to the outdoors extremely challenging for some families.
Meanwhile, doctors have started prescribing hikes over medications, and terms such as “forest schools” and “unstructured playtime” are new buzzwords. When it comes to climate, an understanding and appreciation of the natural world is vital to comprehending the dramatic changes happening to our planet. So how do we encourage outdoor curiosity and conservation in a generation raised on screen time? Can phones and video games help facilitate engagement with nature?
General Manager, San Francisco Recreation and Parks
Co-Director of Citizen Science, The California Academy of Sciences
Pediatrician and Founder/Director of the Center for Nature and Health, UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland
Founder and Host, Climate One