Here at Sanborn Western Camps, we are “cutting edge” when it comes to youth development, programming, and our mission-centric goals. We also attempt to be cutting edge when it comes to innovative, new technologies. Attempt is the right word.
We are pretty good with Facebook, decent on Twitter, and are mastering (and enjoying) the finer points of Pinterest and Instagram. Though you will find us on Google+ and LinkedIn, the posts there might not be exactly cutting edge. They will be VERY P.E. (Pre-Evacuation).
That is the challenge of technology for those of us who deeply believe in unplugging…for days, and often months at a time. Even though we can’t keep up with all the methods of delivery, we try to keep on top of the message, and Google Alerts is the perfect platform.
Over the last 3-4 years we have had a Google Alert that is looking for “children in nature.” At first, there were always articles and posts that began or contained, “in the nature of children.” But today, when we checked, there were 5 different articles from all over the world that expressed the importance of getting children outside.
From Vancouver, David Suzuki writes, “Families play a key role in getting kids outside.” In a survey, “youth were 20 percent more likely to take part in outdoor programming or explore nature on their own if they spent time outside from an early age.” For him, unstructured play in the outdoors allows children and teens to connect with their families and the natural world in a way that increases stewardship and global health and stability.
On the other side of the pond, Mike Collins shares that “making nature part of children’s everyday experience is a simple and effective way of plugging them into the world around them.” He sees both families and schools as integral parts of keeping children connected to the natural world.
Then there are the events: at the Houston Arboretum there is an experiential, nature-based family Halloween event; at the Redlands Conservancy in CA, the kick-off to their fall hiking series is a “Kids’ Day Outdoors” to get families outside together; in Lincolnshire, UK, a “Prey-Se” Nature Day on a local farm hopes they are “developing awareness and encouraging our younger generations to appreciate the importance of such places;” and, at High Trails Outdoor Education Center, this Saturday is our No Child Left Inside Family Fun Day. All of these activities and events, many sponsored by local grassroots organizations and run
So take some IRL time with the natural world this weekend…it’s a trending topic that is sure to have your friends pinning your weekend photos and nature activities for weeks to come!