Category Archives: nature

Meds vs. mud: Unstructured outdoor playtime a critical solution for kids

mud

It was all a matter of perspective.

To the six young children, the muddy, clay-bottomed stream that wound through a number of campsites at the Central Pennsylvania Wesleyan Campground offered an opportunity to play. To stretch their imaginations and then put their plans into action, building a small dam and exploring for crayfish and other critters during the excavation process. Read the rest of this entry

What father red fox teaches us about parenting

redfoxpup

Perhaps the best father you’ll find in the animal world is the red fox. While the mother protects the young pups in the den, the red fox dad travels long distances to find and provide food for the family.

As those young fox pups grow and emerge from their den to explore, it is the father that plays with them and teaches them the dangers of the outside world. Read the rest of this entry

Finding God on a nature hike

vernalpool

There was much to see on a series of nature hikes taken this summer at a western Pennsylvania kids camp.

But one of the best lessons came from what wasn’t seen. The camp, sponsored by the state’s western branch of the Wesleyan denomination, offered a slew of outdoors-based activities ranging from rock climbing to natural waterslides with a number of devotional rallies held throughout for kids in second through sixth grades. It was an inspirational five days in nature, and an experience I share through several previous blog entries. Read the rest of this entry

Getting to the ‘root’ of the lesson

dirtkid

Four small fingers and a thumb wrapped themselves carefully around a young dandelion shoot at the edge of a small woodlot. The dirt below it was dark, loose and extremely rich with nutrients. Read the rest of this entry