All things nature is the theme for this post. With mental health problems on the rise, going back to nature answers lots of questions.
Being outdoors, enjoy the fresh air and playing with, whatever you can find, creates the mental space, creative thinking and freedom to breath. Technology has its place, but there is nothing quite like putting on your trainers, climbing a tree, exploring woods and collecting insects in old tubs.
I have never read a report that says fresh air and nature is bad for our health, on the contrary in fact, It has been found to improve our health and reduces stress. The benefits for children is allowing them the space to learn, explore, ask questions about the world, learn about the environment and understand why we need to look after it, as well as the physical benefits of getting out and exercising.
*It builds children's confidence to explore and test their limits, How high can I climb? Can I jump that stream?
*It promotes creativity and imagination by allowing them to think more freely.
* It teaches them responsibilities by looking after the places and animals around us.
It is something we like to promote and get out and about as much as possible. The kids could be having a bad day but as soon as we get out the house, their bad moods get blown away with the wind.
One of the biggest things that I have noticed since home educating Violet, is how young she has become in her playing. She is no longer spending lots of time on the phone trying to act 'grown up' with her friends. She is playing hide and seek, enjoying being outdoors and walking more. We are enjoying spending that time with her and we have certainly learnt a lot about her. During the summer months we move her chair and table outside and work in the sunshine, We spend more of our day outside in the fresh air than inside. The beauty of home educating is that, if the weather is nice, we can do our written work in the evenings or early morning and spend the day times out enjoying the weather.
Violet is an explorer, and she often wonders off to see what is just off the path laid out. She wants to climb trees, jump across streams and find new things. We often look around and wonder where she has gone, we call her name and a little voice appears from behind a tree.
The weather plays no part in our plans, we just dress to the weather and play in the rain.
The greatest thing about it all is that it is FREE. We always pack a picnic and don't spend a penny.
This year we have made a conscious effort to spend more time in our garden and encouraging wildlife to us. We have built a bug house, which is now full of lots of creepy crawlies. We have put out food to encourage birds into our garden and created a vegetable patch. The kids have enjoyed growing food from seed and watching for the results. We are now planning more days out to visit local woods, parks and getting to know the area we live in. We make it our daily mission to spend time outside, even if its just a walk in the rain around the block. They say 'the best things in life are free' and we intend to make the most of the world around us.