Building a connection between my children and nature is of the up most importance to me for many reasons. Technology and screens run much of our busy lives, so it’s extra important we take a few minutes and spend it screenfree and in nature.
My daughter was born in the summer of 2015 and she has loved being outside since we came home from the hospital. She had colic along with a 6pm fussy time daily and the only thing that seemed to calm her was taking her outside. Fast forward to today and she still loves being outside and free to explore. Not only does she enjoy being outside, but I have also noticed that connecting her to nature makes me feel like a much better parent as well.
- Building a connection to nature Protecting the Earth has become very important to me especially over the last couple years. I want to leave behind a better world for my children and their children and one way I can do that is by fostering a love of nature for them. The only way to do this is by spending quality time with them in nature. I want them to know the names of local plants and animals, experience the wind on their skin, and feel the warmth of the sun on their face. They can’t experience these things by sitting inside all day and let’s face it, they won’t take themselves outside on their own. Not only are they way too young to do this (15 months and my youngest is still baking), but I also need to lead by example and show them how awesome Mother Nature is. We are building a connection to nature AND making memories that they will one day want to share with their own children.
- Building a better connection between parent and children We all know the more undistracted, quality time we spend with our children the better our relationships will be. This is also true when we spend that time with them in nature. Together, we are improving our relationship and making memories together that will last a lifetime. We enjoy camping, hiking, and just playing together in our backyard. As long as we are together and outside, we make the most of it.
- Being outside boosts mama’s happiness When I am outside, I feel grounded and happy. There’s something about being outside and free from walls that boosts my positivity. When mama is happy, it helps with my patience, my energy, and my overall mood. These things help to improve our relationship.
- Together, we are learning When we are outside, we are playing and learning new things. I have a lot to learn personally about the local plants and animals in order to be able to show the kiddos. Also, when we are playing, the children are learning. They are developing language/vocabulary, gross and fine motor skills, using their creativity, and developing a love for trying new things. Together, we are becoming life long learners.
- We are being active Being outside, gets us up, off the couch, and moving! We are always busy running around in the backyard, hiking, and exploring new places when we are outside. I am setting a healthy example for the children while we improve our health each time I take them outside. Not too mention, all the fresh air and movement tires out the kiddos which helps improve their sleep which is also improving their emotional, mental, and physical health.
Being outside is SO important for many more reasons than just the ones I listed. These are the ones that I felt were the most important to me and why being outside makes me feel like I am doing a better job at my mama role. I hope you are feeling motivated to get outside with your kiddos even for a few minutes after reading this blog post.
I’m Melissa Dow, M.ED. I am a wife, mama of 2 and a bonus mama of 1. A former public school educator with 7 years of experience in both special education and general education who is on a new journey to help parents guide their children to uncover their true passions in order to find their life purpose. I love spending time out in nature whether hiking, running, camping, canoeing or just playing in our backyard (aka our outdoor classroom). I also enjoy reading, learning new things, organic gardening and creating our a simple life.