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Benefits of Outdoor Recreation at River View

With River View’s location in the Austin, Texas hill country, young teen girls will enjoy special outings to explore area parks, natural swimming holes, rivers and lakes. Teen girls can also access canoes, paddle-boards, and kayaks on these staff-led field trips into the great outdoors. Hiking trail field trips provide girl students with opportunities to expand their view of what they can accomplish when they keep on track.

Staffers also lead students on trips to visit historic sites around the Austin area, which adds to each young teen girl’s educational experience. River View students are also responsible for garden and animal chores on the ranch, in addition to school and homework. 

River View provides year-round schooling with ongoing open enrollment, 24-hour care and supervision, with strong structure, mentoring, and boundaries. We focus on educating our students in all areas of life to prepare them for their future. Give us a call to learn more about our awesome campus and recreation program.


Benefits of Outdoor Recreation

Experts say that outdoor learning is quite beneficial to students because it makes them healthier and happier, and they do better academically. The various benefits include: 1

  1. Students who get to experience an outdoor learning environment tend to be more attentive and, therefore, have a better recollection of the information that was shared.

  1. Consistent exposure to nature decreases stress and anxiety, helps elevate mood, and helps with emotion.

  1. Children often have too much exposure to digital screens via televisions, computers, and cell phones. This can result in a “nature deficit disorder,” which may lead to obesity and possible psychological and academic issues. Outdoor learning allows students to put their focus back on nature.

  1. Outdoor environments naturally inspire children to be more physically active.

  1. Exposure to bright sunlight found in nature is also healthy for vision. Bright sunlight is necessary for the eyes to develop properly, lowering the risk of nearsightedness.

  1. In outdoor settings, children are more motivated to work together in groups, which can improve their social skills. They learn to manage conflicts, communicate, and cooperate with their peers in a more effective manner.

  1. Outdoor learning provides children with hands-on experiences in nature. Most children learn better by using their senses. Outdoor environments provide the perfect place to do this. Instead of viewing different types of plants or wildlife on a computer or TV screen, they can see, smell, hear, and touch them in nature. Students can even start a garden and grow fruits and vegetables, which may have them wanting to sample their harvest. These hands-on experiences cultivate a love of nature and get them.1

Outdoor education and play support emotional, behavioral and intellectual development. Studies have shown that students who learn outdoors develop: a sense of self, independence, confidence, creativity, decision-making and problem-solving skills, empathy towards others, motor skills, self-discipline and initiative. 2

Learning outdoors is active and increases students’ physical, mental and social health.

Some studies have even shown follow-up (e.g., non-school) physical activity increases with outdoor learning. Access to nature has also been shown to decrease the symptoms of ADHD. Outdoor learning and access to nature also decrease stress levels of students and teachers. 2

A number of studies have documented increased school performance through outdoor education. Research has document increased standardized test scores, enhanced attitude about school, improved in-school behavior, improved attendance and overall enhanced student achievement when students learn in and about nature.

In addition, outdoor education effectively employs a greater range of children’s intelligences. Many researchers contribute the increase in performance to increased relevance and hands-on experience of learning outdoors.  2

Outdoor Exploration and Learning at River View Christian Academy

Our unique boarding school environment is ideal for middle school or high school girls, ages 12-17, who are listless or struggling with life, emotions, or relationships, or who are having difficulty excelling in the traditional educational system. We also offer outdoor exploration and learning opportunities that can improve her physical, mental and social health.

River View Christian Academy was established in 1993 and is a fully accredited, private Christian residential boarding school, now based on 45 beautiful acres near Austin, Texas. Our purpose is to provide a safe, structured, and supportive setting for struggling teenage girls, 12-17 years old. River View encourages girl students who have struggled academically due to negative influences or behavior.


River View is not a residential treatment center, therapeutic boarding school, or alternative boarding school. However, we have found that a structured and caring environment can make an enormous difference in correcting behavioral issues among teenagers. We help girls who suffer from the trauma of adoption, victimization or significant loss.

One of the most important aspects of redirecting a young teen who is struggling is for them to be in an environment that is structured with a routine schedule that they can count on. We believe in student boundaries in all areas of life. Another reason for our success over 25 years at River View Christian Academy is the high level of involvement of staff and parents.

Give us a call to learn more about our program, and the benefits of the outdoor activities we provide.




1 https://www.learningliftoff.com/the-surprising-benefits-of-outdoor-learning/

2 https://www.uwsp.edu/cnr-ap/leaf/school-grounds/documents/outdoor%20education%20research%20for%20school%20Grounds.pdf