Children Intuitively Have a Connection with Nature

by | Jul 29, 2015 | Quantum Conversations & Conscious Thought | 0 comments

fotolia © kichigin19

fotolia © kichigin19

There has been a conscious shift in parents who are looking to raise compassionate, resilient and spiritually connected children who care about the earth – and the world.

For these families, getting out into nature makes a difference!

Just for a moment think about when you were young….

  • What did you love about nature?
  • How did you feel being outside?
  • Did you watch the birds and wish you could fly?
  • Did you ask why the sky was blue?
  • Did you feel a connection to something greater?

My favorite place to play outside when I was a child was in the middle of a hay field hidden by the tall grass.

To this day, I can still remember the feeling of being hugged by the earth while lying on my back looking at the brilliant blue sky. There was a feeling of freedom as I watched the birds and the clouds move above me. I loved watching the leaves on the large maple trees dance in the breeze. I always felt that sense of happiness and peace long after I left the field.

“Respectable scientists – doctors, mental health experts, educationalists, sociologists – are beginning to suggest that when kids stop going out into the natural world to play, it can affect not just their development as individuals, but society as a whole.” Jon Henley of Health and Wellbeing.

I absolutely believe it is very important for the well being of our children and the world to get outdoors and off electronic devices.

“Nature Disorder” or ADHD

A large percentage of children today are labeled as ADHD. Some believe it is caused by the way we educate our children. According to Richard Louv, author of the bestseller, “Last Child in the Woods”, “There is a phenomenon now in our culture happening with children called “nature deficit disorder”, which is a factor in attention deficits in children.”

Researchers at University of Illinois report findings that indicate, “exposure to natural settings in the course of common after-school and weekend activities may be widely effective in reducing attention deficit symptoms in children.”~ National Wildlife Federation

Being in nature helps children “buffer” children’s stress!

fotolia © Rawpixel

fotolia © Rawpixel

Connecting and being in nature is vital for all children, but especially the more sensitive children. Including a relationship to the natural can reduce stress and anxiety.

I asked some young children why they liked being outdoors and how being in nature made them feel.

“I love the sun and the flowers. They make me happy.”

“I love the trees. They make me calm.”

“I can just play.”

“I feel peaceful inside.”

But most profound for me was from a four and a half year old who said, “It’s quiet”.

Doesn’t that make sense in our ever-busy, noisy world?

Connection to Nature Fosters Spirituality

An interesting study conducted by Kristen Parker and Gretel Van Wieren, and published in the Journal of the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture, found “children who played outside five to 10 hours per week said they felt a spiritual connection with the earth, and felt their role is to protect it. The children in this study expressed feelings of peacefulness and some believed that a higher power had created the natural world around them. They also said they had felt happy and had a sense of belonging in the world. They also found children had an appreciation of beauty.”

Overall Benefits of children being outdoors in nature

  • Boosts cognitive functioning
  • Helps promote a sense of well-being
  • Fosters “remembering” of their spiritual connection
  • Helps connection with something greater than themselves
  • Decreases stress and anxiety
  • “ADHD” children found to be more focused
  • Children and adults were found to have better concentration
  • It fosters responsibility and respect
  • It creates a sense of calm and peace
  • Fosters a sense of appreciation of beauty

Parents – follow the path that your children intuitively know: Nature and the great outdoors, with all its cyclic beauty and variety, is an innate teacher to calm their minds, lessen their anxiety, foster responsibility and respect, and to connect their hearts to one another and to all that is in the universe.

 

Resources:

Great articles on the benefits of being outdoors.

Health Benefits (2010). Whole Child: Developing Mind, Body and Spirit through Outdoor Play. Retrieved from:

http://www.nwf.org/What-We-Do/Kids-and-Nature/Why-Get-Kids-Outside/Health-Benefits.aspx

Henley, Jon. (2010). Why Our Children Need to Get Outside and Engage With Nature. Retrieved from:

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2010/aug/16/childre-nature-outside-play-health

 

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