Reconnecting - children and Nature
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"Adventures in the great outdoors are vital to a child's development....Jon Henley" When my generation were growing up we had such freedom. On weekends, and holidays, we'd be gone from morning until hungry. As long as Mum knew where we were, she was happy. Small country towns were good for that! We'd cross railway bridges, hanging onto the sides while the goods train thundered by, then down the track to the swimming hole. Yes, we took risks. We'd play cowboys and indians in the paddock all afternoon, creating such make believe games. We'd be taught all the names of the birds, insects, trees and animals a forest held, and how to look after them. Except for possums, the bain of a forester's life. My brothers became good shots at an early age, possum fur was just beginning to be wanted by textile manufacturers. We used our imagination. We had limb tiring adventures. We ate healthy carbohydrate diets, and used the energy up every day, flinging ourselves muscle weary into bed each night.
I can only compare my childhood with the modern child's daily diet of TV, video games, dvds, recycled air, pressure cooking learning, and mall playgrounds. They only learn about the environment through books and the internet, from a distance, not through touching and reality. We have cotton-wool kids, wrapped up in fear-driven parcels by frightened parents. Frightened to let children find their own spacial awareness.
Even on cold winter's days its good to get out and run along the beach, little fantails keeping you company and cormorants wheeling over the waves...climbing tangled tree branches...as Katya aged nine did yesterday.
Thank you dear Cap'n Knight for putting a Spotlight on this image. As you have put a golden glow in my day, this little lady lightens up our hearts every moment we spend together. Have a wonderful day!
Also by Suzanne McGeady
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