Girls and Greenery
Views of Green Help Girls Succeed
A study by University of Illinois researchers Andrea Faber Taylor, Frances E. Kuo and William C. Sullivan has found that the greener and more natural a girl's view from home, the better she scores on tests of self-discipline. The greater a girl's self-discipline, the more likely she is to do well in school, to avoid unhealthy or risky behaviors and to behave in ways that foster life success.
The study tested parent-child pairs who live in inner city public housing. Children were tested on the components of self-discipline: the abilities to concentrate, to inhibit impulsive behavior and to delay gratification. Parents assessed the amounts of nature and of paved and human-built surfaces visible through their windows.
Boys showed no link between test scores and nature near home, but for girls, on average, the greener the view the higher the scores. Maintaining trees and greenery at home may help support in girls the self-discipline they need to succeed.
The information in this bulletin is from Views of Nature and Self-Discipline: Evidence from Inner City Children, part of the Growing Hope archive, a multi-study research project examining the effects of the physical environment on mothers and children living in urban public housing.