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02-05-24 Thrive Outside

Guest Shannon Rozea, Founder, Thrive Outside

Today’s kids are our future, however, denying them access to outdoor experiences deprives them of the learning needed to become better stewards of the planet. And, the fact is, many children are lacking opportunities to thrive outside, because many lack access to safe, beautiful, natural spaces. The Center for American progress recently reported that 70 percent of low-income communities across the country are located in nature-deprived areas.

Beyond this, school days are planned to the minute, with little time for spontaneity. Recess periods have been cut short, and time outside for hands-on learning have come to be viewed as a luxury most teachers think they can ill afford. Ironically, research findings are showing that this nature-depravity is proving very costly to a child’s natural process of healthy growth and development – physical, mental, emotional and spiritual.

Guest Shannon Rozea (pronounced Rosé) is an Environmental Educator and the Founding Director of Thrive Outside. She is also a Landscape Architect and a mother of five, dedicated to passing on a legacy of love and respect for our earth. Her organization helps schools provide their students with greater access to nature through hands-on outdoor learning and nature play. Shannon does this by designing and implementing dynamic “Outdoor Learning Zones” and supporting these zones with teacher professional development in outdoor learning.

Getting kids back outside and back into nature requires some extremely creative outside-the-box thinking. Shannon and I share our stories, ideas, guidance and resources to help make this happen.


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