Current Research Initiatives
In 2019 a long-term research study on the effectiveness of natural outdoor classrooms was finalized. The study, under the direction of Dr. Samuel Dennis, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and under the guidance of a multi-disciplinary advisory group, was a follow-up to a post occupancy study of nature-based outdoor classrooms conducted by Dr. Dennis and team in 2014 and 2015.
In 2019 Dimensions Foundation, in collaboration with Child Educational Center/Caltech JPL community, is finalizing research that documents the ways natural outdoor classrooms support the development of children’s executive function skills.
In 2016 Dimensions Foundation collaborated with Child Educational Center/Caltech JPL community on research investigating how natural outdoor classrooms support children’s creativity. The research, “Playing with Nature: Supporting Preschooler’s Creativity in Natural Outdoor Classrooms, by Christine Kiewra and Ellen Veselack was published in the International Journal of Early Childhood Environmental Education.
In 2014-2015 Dimensions Foundation and Cultivating the Early Years finished research on the appropriate use of technology as a tool to connect children with nature.
In 2014-2015 a collaboration with Child Educational Center and the Imagination Foundation studied how natural outdoor classrooms support children’s creativity and imagination.