Type of Document Master's Thesis Author Freuder, Tracy Grace URN etd-05102006-025927 Title Designing for the Future: Promoting Ecoliteracy in the Design of Children's Outdoor Play Environments Degree Master of Landscape Architecture Department Landscape Architecture Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title Jacobson, Wendy R. Committee Chair Bryant, Margaret M. Committee Member Clements, Terry L. Committee Member Yglesias, Caren L. Committee Member Keywords
- Watts Branch
Date of Defense 2006-03-22 Availability unrestricted AbstractRapid development of U.S. cities and towns along with changes in society and technology are dramatically affecting childhood experience. Wild places and vacant lots for kids to play in are disappearing. Parents have limited time to spend with their children and fear letting them play outside alone. Traffic is a growing safety hazard and there is an increasing desire for entertainment in the form of TV and video games over outdoor exploration. As a result, children are becoming alienated from nature. They are growing up without developing a personal attachment to their natural surroundings or an understanding of their impact on the environment.
The design of outdoor play areas can help reconnect children to their surroundings and lead to a more environmentally minded generation. Ecoliteracy suggests an understanding of ecological principles as well as appreciation for the environment and an attitude of stewardship. In addition to helping kids acquire factual knowledge, outdoor play spaces should cultivate a sense of wonder and delight and an emotional appreciation of the living world. Through research, observation and application, this thesis project identifies design criteria for promoting ecoliteracy in outdoor play environments.
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