Nowadays, children have less contact with the nature because of reasons such as urbanization, overloaded work and study, high-speed living pace and increased crime rate which has brought some fears for parents to let their children play outdoors without their companion. Instead of going outside or playing with peers, they spend much of their free time sitting in front of the television or computer, playing various digital games. This has caused physical and mental issues as more and more children have poorer eyesight, become vulnerable to various disease and experience social communication barriers etc. Richard Louv describes this phenomenon as “nature-deficit disorder” in his book and the researcher suggests many benefits of playing in the nature for children’s development (as cited in Why Naturalize Outdoor, 2012). I have been adamant to the principles of raising the children as respecting their natural personalities as well as perceiving them as independent individuals, and providing them with the chance to play in the nature as often as possible.
There are substantial benefits of raising children in the nature. Initially, children have great space for various physical activities, and these will enhance their health as well as endurance. The more energetic a child is, the more passionate he or she will be for things around. This passion will bring positive effect for children when they are doing their academic course. American Institute for Research found that outdoor science classes improved children’s science testing score by 27% (as cited in Why Naturalize Outdoor, 2012). Moreover, children who play outdoors have more chance to meet different people and socialize with other children through games. During these games, they will get to know that people have different personalities and how to get along with other peers. Children will benefit from these experiences as they grow up, they need to adapt into the society and get along with various people. Otherwise, if children get used to sitting at home alone then they may feel uncomfortable and isolated among people. What’s more, parents and children can develop a mutual intimacy while spending some times in the nature in which adults may withdraw themselves temporarily from their preoccupied businesses, attentively listening to their children; this is of great meaning for healthy and balanced growth of the child.
To sum up, the nature is of the greatest beauty of this world and is one of the most precious gifts from the God; children may lose their inborn ability to realize these or to develop compassion for the surrounding environment if they are kept far away from the nature and lack of the “G-Vitamin” which means the green vitamin as one the most important nutrition for human health being (as cited in Why Naturalize Outdoor, 2012). In the book “Last child in the woods” by Richard Louv, there are some activities suggested by the author for family together, and personally I have some thoughts about organizing some trips with my family to explore the beautiful nature of Kazakhstan.
Benefits of connecting children with the nature. (January, 2012). Natural Learning Initiatives. Retrieved from:https://naturalearning.org/sites/default/files/Benefits