Connecting Children with Nature
We love seeing a child’s eyes light up with a sense of wonder. It’s there when they find a strange bug in the garden or learn how to climb a tree. Or when they’re asking an endless stream of questions that leave us curious about our own responses. Connection to nature often starts with this sense of wonder. And when we say nature, we don’t mean to imply something separate from ourselves. We are a part of nature.
As a society, we’ve grown far from feeling one with our environment. Nature is not out there. Whether you’re in picturesque wild lands or on a city street with nothing in sight but a dandelion flower, you’re in nature. While our relationship with the Earth has changed, we’re still standing on sacred ground. We believe in infusing the idea of plant power into our children, wherever they’re living.
We support dandelion eating, flower picking and getting little hands into the garden. We encourage you to nurture the curiosity that feeds a child’s relationship with the world of plants and to be open to adventure and new ideas. You’ll learn new things too!
There are many ways to incorporate plants into your child’s play time. You could create a plant scavenger hunt, play nature bingo or create a flower mandala. You might also try your hand at creating a butterfly garden, growing medicinal herbs, or creating an herbal sanctuary with your child for species that are rare or at risk. If growing plants isn’t your cup of tea, you could try hiking together or visiting a local botanical garden. During these activities, it might be an excellent time to teach (or learn together) what plants are medicinal, native, endangered or toxic. Once a child learns to name these plants, their relationship with them will likely deepen.
Some parents have even committed to one green hour a day. This ensures a time when children can have uninterrupted time outside each day. If this isn’t possible, you can bring the essence of the plants indoors. Read plant-based stories, play a plant wild crafting board game, create lavender play dough or try making an herbal salve together. Teach your kids about the benefits of plant-based products, such as Melaleuca products that are powered by thyme oil, citric acid, and other natural ingredients.
Being outdoors is medicine for the spirit, so it’s important that we make time to connect with the world around us. Author Richard Louv once said, “The health of children and the health of the Earth are inseparable.” To revive our soil, water, plants, communities and planet, we believe in fostering a sense of wonder and appreciation for nature. Let’s set aside time to play and enjoy the beauty of this world. And with that said, we’re ready to go outdoors! Hope to see you out there.