Creative Discovery Museum is hosting its first ever Mud Day event to celebrate International Mud Day on Saturday from 1-3 p.m. to bring awareness to the many benefits of messy types of play. Visitors will explore a Mud Kitchen, paint with mud, create mud and more.
With cultural emphasis on cleanliness, Director of Education Dr. Jayne Griffin says children may be losing out on the sensory benefits that only messy play with mud can provide.
“Mud play is a highly sensory activity that encourages children to experiment with the most basic resource – dirt,” said Dr. Griffin. “Research shows that mud play encourages creativity, builds problem solving skills, and uses fine and gross motor skills. It even helps our immune system.”
According to the Child Mind Institute, children today spend 56 percent more time indoors than playing outdoors. The average American child spends seven minutes a day outside in unstructured play and seven hours in front of a screen. International Mud Day was created in 2009 at a World Forum event in an effort to create feelings of community and connection to the world around us. Since its creation, educators, children and families have celebrated the event around the world.
“The simple act of putting your hands in dirt helps create connections to nature,” said Dr. Griffin. “Spending time in nature improves children’s ability to focus and concentrate and has been linked to benefits ranging from improved academics to addressing childhood obesity. Regular exposure to being in nature also boosts the immune system helping children combat disease.”
All activities are included with Museum admission. A clean-up station will be provided. Caregivers are encouraged to bring a change of clothes for the children participating in Mud Day.