Characteristics of nature-based experience areas for children in botanical gardens and their effects on children

Characteristics of nature-based experience areas for children in botanical gardens and their effects on children
発表者/presenter’s name:〇Yume Matsumoto 1,H iroshi Takeyama 1
所属/Affiliation:1 Graduate School, University of Hyogo

Recently, botanical gardens from all over Japan have been discussing ways to enhance the areas where experience of activities in a natural environment for children. However, currently many botanical gardens only have permanent quizzes, which is still insufficient to create an environment that enriches children’s experiences. In this paper, we had a questionnaire of botanical gardens across the country regarding the current situation including the presence or absence of experience areas for children and about awareness like the level of satisfaction. After that, we decided to visit botanical gardens that have such areas and apprehend the spatial characteristics by interviewing them and understanding their constituent elements and the aims of their installation. As a result, it is found out that in terms of satisfaction with the environment and programs for children, satisfaction with tangibles was half that of satisfaction with intangibles, and 12 of the botanical gardens nationwide had experience areas for children.
Furthermore, these botanical gardens have been confirmed to have characteristics such as places for creative play and experiences and places that encourage children’s independent participation.
We also created a children’s mini-garden in a botanical garden and conducted an experiment to see what kind of greenery children and their parents visiting the garden would be interested in. The target site was the Kobe Municipal Arboretum, and the experiment was conducted over two days on August 19 and 20, 2023. Five experience areas were set up in the area to capture the visitors’ behavior: “Searching: looking for insects in decayed tree,” “Creating: creating flower beds freely,” “Collecting: collecting seeds in the botanical garden,” “Feeling: experience plants through the five senses by touching and smelling them.,” and “Gazing and Reading: reading explanatory panels on plants. Through this experiment, many parent-child interactions were observed, especially in the “Create” area.

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