Why teach children through nature? Nature is essential to the child’s development physically, mentally and spiritually.
“We have forgotten that children are designed by nature to learn through self-directed play and exploration, and so, more and more, we deprive them of freedom to learn.” Peter O. Gray
Gross Motor Development
Climbing, swinging, hiking, walking, running, throwing, kicking… These are all actions that are essential in proper development. These actions would be discouraged in any other environment other than the outdoors. This is why Kinder Forest has gross motor activities and games integrated into every lesson. When children play in nature, they are developing core strength, coordination, balance, and overall physical wellness.
Nature provides a rich sensory environment with various textures, smells, sounds, and sights. Children can explore these sensory experiences, which stimulate their senses, promote cognitive growth, and enhance their understanding of the world around them.
Nature has a calming and soothing effect on the nervous system. Exposure to natural environments can reduce stress and anxiety. Nature also provides opportunities for solitude and reflection, which contribute to emotional resilience and self-awareness.
Engages Natural Curiosity
Chances are, your child has a favorite animal, plant, or subject that they are naturally curious about. They might role play as this animal, or choose to read books about them. Nature has an endless amount of subjects for the child to study, led by their own drive to learn. Nature is a living laboratory for learning. Children can observe and engage with natural phenomena such as plants, animals, weather, and ecosystems. This hands-on experience fosters curiosity, critical thinking, problem-solving skills, and a deeper understanding of scientific concepts.
Early exposure to nature fosters a sense of connection and responsibility toward the environment. Children who grow up appreciating the natural world are more likely to develop eco-friendly attitudes and behaviors.
Independence and Confidence
Outdoor experiences allow children to take risks and engage in activities that challenge their abilities. Overcoming these challenges builds confidence, resilience, and a sense of independence.
For these reasons Acorn to Oak has created nature based homeschool curriculum that is completely child led and worksheet-free. Learn more here.