New research has revealed the extent to which the next generation understand the problems facing the planet. Parents revealed that an incredible 77% of children in the UK have at least a reasonable awareness and understanding of endangered species and extinction.
While the understanding of problems relating to climate change is high, the knowledge of possible solutions is lower. Just 16% of kids have a strong understanding of what conservation is but more needs to be done to equip them for a future of combatting climate change. The question is: how do we engage them in the solutions?
Almost two thirds of parents (65%) believe that the less time children spend outdoors, the less they appreciate wildlife and nature. Parents fear that not being able to spend time outside would results in less awareness of protecting the planet (58%), a decrease in mental health (52%) and limitations to their imagination (44%).
Research commissioned by Twycross Zoo has found that parents think a good imagination is essential as it enables children to be curious (68%), engaged with the world around them (63%) and become better learners (61%).
The vast majority of parents (85%) say that imaginary characters from books and films are important to stimulate their child’s imagination. Figures such as The Gruffalo are considered popular natural ambassadors.
But nothing beats the real thing. Almost three quarters (74%) of parents think that spending time outdoors helps their child engage best with the natural world and more than two thirds (69%) of parents agree visiting wildlife parks and zoos is a great way to engage their kids.
With 99% of parents in agreement that time spent in nature is essential for their child’s development, it seems like the future is outdoors.
Leading conservation charity, Twycross Zoo, has announced that a multi-million pound major new development, The Gruffalo Discovery Land, will open this spring, in a UK first. Twycross Zoo’s aim for this ground-breaking experience is to inspire more children than ever before about the importance of conservation and the natural world.
The new, four-acre land is located in the heart of England at Twycross Zoo and brings together the much-loved characters, from best selling children’s book The Gruffalo created by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, and a conservation organisation that exists to protect wildlife, preserve endangered species and educate the next generation on the importance of protecting our planet.
The research was carried out online by Research Without Barriers – RWB. All surveys were conducted between 17th January 2022 and 20th January 2022. The sample comprised 1,005 UK parents of 4-11-year-olds. All research conducted adheres to the UK Market Research Society (MRS) code of conduct (2019). RWB is registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office and complies with the DPA (2018).