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Great Outdoors Month 2024

Kids are out of school for summer, vacations and camps are in full swing, and the outdoors are calling! How do we carve out time to enjoy the outdoors and all the benefits it has to offer?

Natural Inquirer is here to help!

Even if you’re not near a park or forest, you can participate in Great Outdoors Month, too!

Our series of outdoor challenges are an easy way to encourage more time outdoors! Originally paired with the virtual learning adventure Nature Health Benefits LIVE (definitely check it out to learn more about the links between nature and human health), these outdoor challenges are easy to try.

The challenges are designed to get you thinking about how much time you spend in nature and how time in nature makes you feel.

Outdoor Challenge 1

In this challenge, you’ll commit to spending 15 minutes outside doing something active. Then reflect on how you feel afterwards.

Outdoor Challenge 2

In Challenge 2, increase that commitment to spending time outdoors to at least 15 minutes twice a week. In this challenge, you’ll complete a mindfulness activity that can help you focus on using all of your senses while you are out in nature.

Outdoor Challenge 3

In Challenge 3, you’ll reflect on how you already spend time in nature and brainstorm new ways to enjoy the outdoors. Make a plan to build more time for nature into your daily life.

Outdoor Group Challenge

In the final group challenge, you will track time spent outside and see if you can increase your time in nature over the course of three weeks. Complete the challenge with your family, your friends, your class, or even challenge yourself individually.

Another fun way to spend time outside? Check out NSI: Nature Science Investigator!

NSI: Nature Science Investigator

NSI is a small booklet designed for use outdoors and only requires a pencil. Try your hand at being one of eleven different kinds of scientist–take a soil sample or bird watch or hunt for insects!

These booklets are designed for 8 to 14-year-olds, so kids can complete activities on their own. Or work together as a family to include younger family members!

NSI is a great way to encourage time outdoors AND an interest in science.

  • Available in English or Spanish
  • Introduces 11 different scientists
  • All you need is a pencil!
Cover of the Nature Science Investigator

More Resources about Recreation in the Great Outdoors

Looking for more? Here are just a few of our resources about outdoor recreation.

Front cover of Pack to Back featuring a central photo of children walking on a log across a stream and a background photo of mountains.

Pack to Back (Wilderness 50 Monograph Series) – Vol. 1 No. 9

Front cover of the Wilderness 2.0 monograph featuring a mountain scene.

Wilderness 2.0 (Wilderness 50 Monograph Series) – Vol. 1 No. 10

Front cover of

Time Out – Vol. 1 No. 5

Front cover of National Inquirer's Wilderness Benefits edition featuring illustrated panels for each of the six articles in the journal.

Wilderness Benefits – Vol. 7 No. 1

Cover for the 'Where the Sidewalk Ends' article. The main image is a photo of a dirt road flanked by yellow leafed trees.

Where the Sidewalk Ends – Visitor Use of Natural and Landscaped Areas in Urban Parks

Nissa McKinney stands outside next to a wooden walkway.

Nissa McKinney

I am a science writer for Natural Inquirer. I work with scientists to translate their research into language that’s easy for students to understand. I used to be a high school English teacher, so I love getting to connect with...