I was able to organize small groups of children between the ages of four through 10 years of age. I prepared a four hour program designed for using the outdoors as our classroom. In this process, I was not only the teacher, but the students were instructing me. In all cases, we all had such a beautiful time together. Each group brought something forward in me, as a nature instructor.
On my last excursion this past weekend, I had a brand new set of students that would be accompanying me on a two and half mile hike. This was not an easy task for this age group. It was a new location for me, and for some of the families. I had emailed all the parents about the steep paths and warned them to remind the children that we would be climbing a mountain. I was very anxious about what might await us.
From the minute the children met, it was like an instant karmic bonding of old friends reacquainted.
On this trip, I had one older sibling that was just the kindest, loving and spiritual leader in guiding the children's energy. His smile could charm your heart away. He also knew the trail very well, and seemed to guide all of us to the hidden crevices, dips and treasures. The children were actually experiencing "every moment", as we like to call it. I never heard one complaint, or in-deference. They were joyfully skipping and singing songs from our classroom as we hiked together.
We started back up the hill after a quick round of the SuperConscious Living Exercises that I teach in our classroom. A serge of energy ran through our bodies. We climbed up the steep hill with power, energy, and vitality.
When I arrived home from our day together I was in a state or divine gratitude, joy, and inner bliss. It was indeed a humbling experience to be in the company of these great little souls.
These children were the instruments today. What a wonderful reminder for all of us.
In the days that followed this trip I have been watching children's open ended love of nature and outdoor play. It amazes to watch under all circumstances the sheer joy that radiates from their beings.
Recently I just came across an article about some of the benefits of children and nature. Here are some quotes from that article I would like to pass along:
- Children with views of and contact with nature score higher on tests of concentration and self-discipline. The greener, the better the scores (Wells 2000, Taylor et al. 2002).
- Children who play regularly in natural environments show more advanced motor fitness, including coordination, balance and agility, and they are sick less often (Grahn, et al. 1997, Fjortoft & Sageie 2001).
- When children play in natural environments, their play is more diverse with imaginative and creative play that fosters language and collaborative skills (Moore & Wong 1997, Taylor, et al. 1998, Fjortoft 2000).
But another important factor that most children experience is that God whispers through the trees, through the babbling brooks, and the sounds of the ocean. Through these experiences children tune into their higher spiritual natures. They easily experience the higher cosmic consciousness we all seek.
"Everything in Nature is God's Artwork." Joseph(Bharat) Cornell
I am profoundly grateful in being able to share nature with our children.
May this be one of many more nature programs while climbing mountains together.