Muddy Boots and Sandy Hands is a Family Nature Club - an informal gathering of families with a shared aim to connect Geelong kids with nature.
Today's kids spend significantly less time playing outdoors than the previous generation; and when they do go outdoors it is less frequently, and for markedly shorter periods of time. Amazingly, today's average eight-year-old is better able to identify cartoon characters than native wildlife and trees in their own community.
Nature and the outdoors is good for all of us. Research shows that it is important, healthy and fun for children to have frequent and varied opportunities for play outdoors – and especially outdoors with natural vegetation – as part of their everyday lives. When children do play outdoors, they are happier, healthier and smarter. They are more self-disciplined and focussed. They are more self-confident, creative and cooperative. They are better problem-solvers, more optimistic, and more physically fit. Family ties are strengthened, a sense of community is nourished, and a sense of place is cultivated. All in all, nature and the outdoors is good for children and their friends and family too.