Organic Runner Mom

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Why our kids need nature. Let them explore!

Summertime is hectic but in a good way. It must be embraced. The days of my kids being little grow shorter and I want to soak up all of the summer giggles and adventures that they plan for us. Summer offers up long daylight hours that we crave during the winter months when the sun puts itself to bed early. We take advantage of every ounce of daylight. Each day offers an opportunity to get out and explore with some of the best exploring happening outside in nature that surrounds us.

Have you heard the term Nature Deficit Disorder? Nature Deficit Disorder is a “term was coined by author Richard Louv in his book Last Child in the Woods in order to explain how our societal disconnect with nature is affecting today’s children.” (SOURCE). We need to allow our children the chance to learn in nature.

When I was growing up we spent our summers at our lake house on a quiet little lake, Silver Lake where you would spend every waking moment exploring the natural environment. We would spend countless hours playing in the water, looking for fresh water mussels and snails, fishing, and catching minnows. We would find baby ring neck snakes and baby box turtles. We would explore the woods in search of Salamanders and “Fairy Pipes.” We would create houses for our salamanders out of moss, and ferns and other natural objects. The world at the lake was (and still is) magical and the natural environment that we were interacting with opened and captured our imaginations.

Now when I return to the Lake with my own kids I feel calm and soothed by the surroundings. These memories remain strong for me and make up “core memories” that I believe helped to shape me. Seeing my own kids discover in nature what I found as a kid fills me with happiness as I see their imaginations take off and the extreme curiosity to explore take over. Unprompted by me they make their own discoveries and light up when they see something new.

These experiences are what will inspire my children and will let their imaginations run wild. Nature is a blank canvas for the imagination of our children and we should let them outside to explore and to discover!

This week make it a goal to send your kids outside for some unstructured explore time and see what they discover.

Now when I return to the Lake with my own kids I feel calm and soothed by the surroundings. These memories remain strong for me and make up “core memories” that I believe helped to shape me. Seeing my own kids discover in nature what I found as a kid fills me with happiness as I see their imaginations take off and the extreme curiosity to explore take over. Unprompted by me they make their own discoveries and light up when they see something new.

These experiences are what will inspire my children and will let their imaginations run wild. Nature is a blank canvas for the imagination of our children and we should let them outside to explore and to discover!

This week make it a goal to send your kids outside for some unstructured explore time and see what they discover.

What was your last best adventure in the woods? What did your see, hear or smell? I’d love to hear your best memories!

Organic Runner Mom

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2 responses

2 responses

  1. I love this Sandra. So true. Today I sat outside with my kids and we watched the clouds. There were a few dark clouds coming in and we talked about whether rain was on it’s way. Then they each got a sketch pad and crayons and drew clouds and talked about how they were moving through the sky. We had such a wonderful time together! I am a huge believer in nature being the ultimate playground. Your memories of the lake with your family are priceless. Thanks for sharing!!
    Natalie recently posted…The Weekend + Life LatelyMy Profile

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