Hi, Suz, and thanks for the welcome. One of the congregations in my church began sponsoring a Nature Club about 10 years ago and has had enough success with it outside the Pittsburgh area that they've become known as "the nature church." My wife & I decided to try this in my home congregation in Central FL 3 years ago & it has also been successful. When I began looking for resources I came across Louv's book & thus discovered this website. Glad to be a part of the movement and hope to contribute in some small way to make it grow and develop into something lasting. -Mike Barnett
Hello Suz, Thanks for the welcome message. Have been an avid reader and supporter of the CNN since reading Richard's book and listening to him speak at a conference in Worcester, last Summer. Interesting that you mention the great deal of interest in Forest School in the States as I am coming over in March to deliver a workshop to Boys and Girls Club staff of the Tennessee Valley in Knoxville. Quite bizarre really but I was over with my partner Angie in September doing some volunteering and hiking with and on the Appalachian Trail in the Gt Smoky Mountains. Also took the opportunity to visit local Boys and Girls Clubs and they invited me back to do some training at their annual event - surreal given their location, but really positive at the same time. May need bits of advice in the build up to make sure I can deliver with an American twist!! All best wishes, Graham
Yes, I approach nature with children through the arts, theatre in particular with drawing and sculpting included, and it is quite effective! For the last play, taken from Sioux and Papago tales about the origin of the rainbow and butterflies, we studied many species of butterflies and made props to resemble them. We perform in a grand bookstore in our town, with good adult and child audience response.
It is my feeling that human nature is our first connection with the larger kingdom, and children deserve to be good at expressing themselves and their humanity. I 'd like to take this project into other communities, when funding is available.
I think I signed up for Nature Teachers a couple of weeks ago, but not sure what the next step is. Can you give me a hint?
Thank you for the warm welcome, Suz! I look forward to participating in this discussion, learning about the many ways the group's members are enjoying their interactions with nature and sharing news of my work with Bookpx.
When I look back on my life I can see that being out in nature whenever things got rough literally saved my life. About 6 years ago a group of folks who were mentored by Jon Young in CA, where I was living, were running a program, mostly for homeschoolers with plans to include after school programs. My 2 younger kids, then 2 and 3 1/2 years old, and I attended their outdoor gatherings and were completely enthralled. That particular group has morphed into a Teen School and now in WA my kids go out 1-2 times per week with mentors. Jon Young was mentored as a boy and young man by Tom Brown Jr. Tom was mentored by an Apache scout in NJ in the 1950's and now runs the Tracker School. They employ "invisible classroom" methods that all "native" meaning original tribes used to teach their young. Can I recommend Jon's site http://jonyoung.org? All of the info on how they interact with young people outdoors is laid out in Coyote's Guide, an amazing book, in my opinion. The thing I am most excited about is that we are experiencing being outdoors in ways that are really fun and the kids know way more about the local flora and fauna than me and their dad put together! They can even make a fire without matches and make a shelter. Appreciate this site and will work on posting some pictures.
I am enjoying watching the word spread about the somewhat obvious, to me, that being in nature is fundamental to being healthy. I'm curious as to how people are finding their way back to basics in their lives. I especially like the work of Jon Young, have you heard of him? My kids all participate in Nature Classes with mentors that were trained by him and/or Tom Brown Jr. I am always on the lookout for fun ideas about getting myself, friends and family outside connecting with nature. Thanks for touching base.
As others have said, thank you also for the welcome! It is great to find other outdoor lovers and Girl Scout supporters here! I saw your post about Muir Beach--are you in the Bay Area? I spent two summers in Marin and loved to hike and run the trails on Mt. Tam :)
Thanks, and hello. I was pleased to find this forum, and am pleased with the content. I would love to share photos of this garden, I will ask the teacher if this us possible as it will probably necessitate parental releases to show the kids. Peace!
Thank you for welcoming me! I am starting a outdoor active Kindergarten program and was very excited to find your site - it sooo aligns to many of our goals and philosophies. I joined so that I could keep up with other stories from parents and others about their experiences in helping to get our children outside. I look forward to reading more!
Hi Suz! Thanks for finding us! I need to spend more time on this site and navigate around more, but my time is so limited. I look forward to learning as much as possible. As for our family we are very excited about our journey and looking forward to meeting so many on the trail. We begin in May and start in Colorado then head into Wyoming. Our route is a bit complex, but will hit every state! You can see more at www.exodusfamily.com if you are interested! I look forward to chatting with you more!