Trees will make your child ‘smarter’…..and other benefits…see below…lets share this information and repeat this mantra!!

Cheers , Christine Bishop

Research conducted in Toronto (full article attached) and a nice summary of benefits below:

Tree cover and species composition effects on academic performance of primary school students

Sivajanani Sivarajah*, Sandy M. Smith, Sean C. Thomas Faculty of Forestry, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

* [email protected]


Human exposure to green space and vegetation is widely recognized to result in physical and mental health benefits; however, to date, the specific effects of tree cover, diversity, and species composition on student academic performance have not been investigated. We compiled standardized performance scores in Grades 3 and 6 for the collective student body in 387 schools across the Toronto District School Board (TDSB), and examined variation in relation to tree cover, tree diversity, and tree species composition based on comprehensive inventories of trees on school properties combined with aerial-photo-based assessments of tree cover. Analyses accounted for variation due to socioeconomic factors using the learning opportunity index (LOI), a regional composite index of external challenges to learning that incorporates income and other factors, such as students with English as a second language. As expected, LOI had the greatest influence on student academic performance; however, the proportion of tree cover, as distinct from other types of “green space” such as grass, was found to be a significant positive predictor of student performance, accounting for 13% of the variance explained in a statistical model predicting mean student performance assessments. The effects of tree cover and species composition were most pronounced in schools that showed the highest level of external challenges, suggesting the
importance of urban forestry investments in these schools.

from their Introduction:


Urban green spaces, specifically urban forests, are important because they moderate air temper- ature [1], mitigate ambient air pollution [2], produce human health benefits [3–7], lower human mortality rates [8], and generally improve the quality of life of urban inhabitants [9–10]. Human exposure to green space can result in positive feelings, relaxation, and stress relief, and can restore attention-demanding cognitive performance [11–12]. Mental health benefits follow- ing exposure to forested areas have also been linked with specific physiological responses, including reduced diastolic blood pressure and reduced heart rate [6–8].

Several studies have examined the relationship of green space in preschool and elementary school playgrounds to desired educational outcomes. These studies consistently show a positive relationship between natural playscapes and enhanced physical activity [13], motor development [14], creative play behavior [13; 15–16], and environmental learning [16]. When exposed to green space, children aged from 7 to 12 years old with attention deficit disorder (ADD) functioned more effectively as their ADD symptoms decreased [11].

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