“During my school days, I would be crossing the paddy fields, climbing a tree or go to the river banks on my way school.”
I told my 8-year-old son. His school bus was honking outside. I rushed his shoes and took him to the school bus.
“I also want to go school like the way you did. I hate this school bus” he said entering the bus.
Those words struck me hard.
THE ‘INDOORED’ GENERATION
Most of the 21st-century parents prefer their kids going to school on a school bus rather than by foot, or sitting on a couch in front of a screen rather than spending time outside. A factor in this trend in parenting might be the increasing fears of dangers and diseases of spending time outdoors. The swiftly changing suburbs where nature is parcelled off more is also a reason.
Indoor activities might be more reasonable for our kids as that would help them to socialise more in a world of multi-player video games and social media. Even parents would encourage that as there are zero risks of outdoors. Studies show that an average kid spends 6-7 minutes outside and around 7 hours in front of screens, daily. So why is it important to take our kids out to nature?
“OUT OF THEIR WAY”
“Kids are born scientists. They’re born probing the natural world that surrounds them. They’ll lift up a rock, they’ll pull petals off a flower, they’ll ask you why the grass is green and the sky is blue, and they’ll experiment with breakable things in your house.
I think the best thing a parent can do, when raising a child, is simply getting out of their way” quoted Neil deGrasse Tyson. Nature provides the best wellness for your kids. It is the best teacher for your kids. It builds confidence, develops creativity, teaches responsibility and keep them healthy, both mental and physical.
LET THEM NATURE
The outdoor plays have a lot less structure, letting our kids choose their trails, making them control their own actions and building confidence.
The unstructured style of play also allows kids to interact meaningfully with their surroundings. They can think more freely, design their own activities, and approach the world in inventive ways, developing their creativity.
Being at nature involves physical activities. Interacting with real people and engaging in outdoor plays will benefit our kid’s physical and mental health. It will enhance their wellness.
If a child can do advanced math, speak 3 languages, or receive top grades, but can’t manage their emotions, practice conflict resolution or handle stress, none of that other stuff is really going to matter.
“Learning the soul language of Mother Nature is just like any other language acquisition. It takes time, immersion and is most easily acquired during the foundational years of a child’s life.” quoted Nicolette Sowder. To deny that experience would be the greatest mistake we do to our kids. Let our kids be wilder. Let the outdoors enhance their wellness. Let them sleep under the stars, wake up in the morning to the sound of wild birds and ultimately, experience and live nature.
Let them BREATHE.