The Institute for Health and Wellbeing at the University and the Centre for Children and Youth recently hosted a conference titled ‘The Great Outdoors? Children, Young People and Families in Natural and Rural Spaces’.
The conference provided an opportunity for early career researchers and experienced academics from a range of disciplines (including geography, education, law and psychology) to share their research.
The conference attracted researchers from as far afield as Ohio, USA, and Wollongong, Australia.
Papers explored topics such as the commodification of woodlands, walking as a way of connecting with nature, forest schools, and outdoor playspace.
Prof Helen Lomax (Institute for Health and Wellbeing) led a workshop on using visual methods to explore children’s use of outdoor spaces.
Tracy Hayes (University of Cumbria) ran a session on using storytelling as a means of exploring connections to nature. Pictured are the ‘adventure bears’ used by Tracy as a means of encouraging storytelling.