Sunday, November 7, 2010

Is there anything to this?

With my new workout program carving out an average of an hour and a half to two hours each day, I have had a little less time to read and write. But, I recently ran across the book Last Child in the Woods, Saving our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder. In this book, Richard Louv talks about how a lack of exposure to nature is having a detrimental affect on children.

I think it is intriguing to think that we are actually healthier physically, emotionally and spiritually when we develop in a way that connects us with the world that we were designed to live in.

Admittedly, I haven't actually read it yet, but it is in my reading cue. If I don't get to it right away, it is because I am taking the kids for a hike or tracking someone through the local desert areas.

Here is an excerpt regarding his work from a 2005 story:

"In the not-so-distant past, kids ruled the country's woods and valleys -- running in packs, building secret forts and treehouses, hunting frogs and fish, playing hide-and-seek behind tall grasses. But in the last 30 years, says journalist Richard Louv, children of the digital age have become increasingly alienated from the natural world, with disastrous implications, not only for their physical fitness, but also for their long-term mental and spiritual heath.

In his new book, "Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder," Louv argues that sensationalist media coverage and paranoid parents have literally "scared children straight out of the woods and fields," while promoting a litigious culture of fear that favors "safe" regimented sports over imaginative play. Well-meaning elementary school curricula may teach students everything there is to know about the Amazon rain forest's endangered species, but do little to encourage kids' personal relationship with the world outside their own doors. And advances in technology, while opening up a wealth of "virtual" experiences to the young, have made it easier and easier for children to spend less time outside"


Nichole said...

Heard of this book but not read it yet. I think it is GREAT. THere are scientific studies that show kids who play in the dirt and have exposure to more animals grow up to have less health problems and fewer allergies than urban sidewalk and cement kids.

Jaime said...

I just went and threw dirt on everyone just in case.

Nichole said...

Great way to improvise! I hope it was outside though so that it didnt make a mess for Diane.