Saturday, May 18, 2013

Sweet Mother Nature

Several years ago, I read the book Last Child in the Woods, by Richard Louv. I also had the pleasure of hearing this author speak in Kansas City. As I'm typing this, I have a feeling that I've probably referenced this book/author/idea previously on the blog... maybe multiple times. His phrase "nature deficit disorder" references exactly what it seems: children do not spend enough time in nature. That phrase and idea had a huge impact on me at the time as a teacher - I wasn't a mother yet. Simple things happened - I was able to get rain boots and galoshes purchased for every preschool classroom in our building... window-birdhouses attached to each teacher's window... books purchased to help guide instruction with a focus on outdoor exploration. 

Here I am - no longer employed as a teacher - but working harder than ever to make sure that my current students never lack in their relationship with Mother Nature. I never have to write a lesson plan. I can go for weeks without purchasing any materials. Each student can pursue her own direction and interest. Every topic can be expanded and used across subjects. Mother Nature is AMAZING!

Over the past week, we did a little owl hunting - barred owls, to be exact:

We investigated pond life as well as family structures among geese:

And we definitely stopped to smell the flowers - bleeding heart bouquets picked by the girls. I wonder what we'll learn tomorrow...

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