How to help children connect with nature

Reliance on technology has created a divide between kids and the outdoors, but it’s easy to get them back together. The digitization of the world can provide more opportunities for children to connect with nature, as well as more organic ways to inspire them to explore.

No matter the degree of interest, these methods will help children feel more drawn to nature so that they become more involved in caring for and protecting the planet as they grow up.

Encouraging imagination through independence

A child’s boundless imagination is the most powerful tool to increase their connection to nature. However, the benefits of creativity cannot fully blossom unless there is freedom. Whether in a park or in the backyard, it’s important to allow children to choose their activities, with proper safety precautions in place.

This freedom will allow them to discover the facets of nature that most attract them, be it the smell of flowers or the way insects interact with trees. It also allows for more immersion, as interruptions from an approaching parent can interrupt your discoveries, especially when using all of your senses.

Let him touch and interact with everything, even if it means getting dirty. Climbing, crawling and jumping will engage their fine motor skills, providing a deeper sense of engagement with their surroundings. Investigating leaf patterns and creating toys from found materials are great ways for children to expand their minds from the fixed mindset of what constitutes fun or play.

This is especially true if you tend to gravitate towards one place or activity; there is no need to encourage them to investigate everything. If they find something to latch on to, let them try it with enthusiasm.

Allowing children to guide themselves outside will develop different behaviors that will carry over to the inside. More uninterrupted playtime with fewer screens and distractions creates greater focus and better attention, fostering a more creative mind that loves to explore new ideas.

Balance detox and integration

The most significant benefit of connecting with nature is showing kids how wonderful it is to detox from technology, even briefly. The peace that nature brings, forcing them to step back and slow down, will help their physical health by reducing stress and stress. stress🇧🇷

The physical benefits of turning away from technology will offer a real temptation to continue dating. This doesn’t have to be a solo adventure, either: emphasizing the importance of connecting with friends and family and playing games are productive distractions from the allure of a phone.

Sometimes nature is as mysterious as it is confusing. While technology seems like an impediment to connecting with nature, the beauty of electronics can be a remarkable tool for simplifying complex concepts.

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This tangibility is vital to creating a lasting connection between children and nature, as it decreases resistance to interaction if they know how to access information. Apps and other technology can help children identify birds, plants or constellations. Activities like geocaching can satisfy a child’s need to interact with technology, but require the child to interact with the environment.

Look for nature close to home

That could mean a backyard or a local park, but there are so many more opportunities closer to home to experience the magic of nature. Also, it can be beneficial to try to find unexpected corners where natural wonder lurks to accentuate one’s total connection with nature.

For city dwellers, finding corners where small bushes grow or weeds invade the cracks of the sidewalks are moments to show the power of nature close to home. Nature connection activities can extend to outdoor walks and hikes to explore community gardens or botanical areas. Try exploring places like a local library that might have seed growing classes or stargazing activities that give you more tools to interact with, but it’s still close.

Never underestimate the power of natural accessibility. It makes nature more tangible, solidifying the genuine connection. Despite nature documentaries highlighting towering valleys and peaks that remind people of what’s out there, to connect children more immediately they must foster a sense of magic without having to travel to remote locations.

It’s also important to show the reality of nature, not just the pretty parts. It’s possible to educate children about the effects of climate change, pointing out wildlife that didn’t exist in the city last year or how the community grows different flowers because the composition of the soil has changed. While the climate crisis seems to deter children from developing deeper natural connections, it will only instil a sense of urgency and a deeper understanding to continue their involvement and participation.

Reconnecting children with nature

Children will embrace the wonders of nature if given the chance. While standard use of tablets or TV helps parents get a much-needed break, there are other ways to get that relaxation by educating kids to discover nature. Let them wander and experience it with their senses and appreciation will innately follow. Eventually, children go for walks without being told to, and they yearn to value and protect nature.

By Jane Marshall. Article in English

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