Introducing Children to Nature

In current time, it is not easy to bring along your children to cheer them up in nature. They prefer go to malls, shopping centers to spend their time. Actually it is not their fault. Parents contributes to this situation as well. Their parents, in my opinion, having less effort to seek after information of where they can bring along their children to in touch with nature.

It is supported by the lack of facilities as well in town. For example, it is lack of parks, lack of suitable parks that provided facilities for children, like play ground, etc., lack of urban forests and you can name it to add more reasons for that.

Bringing them along to malls and shopping center is the easiest way to make them happy. As simple as that. Despite bringing children along to have more in touch with nature is providing more benefit for children. Growing up children’s motivation to love nature gradually.

That is why there emerged a movement so called ‘holiday without going to mall’ (liburan tanpa ke mall). This movement, actually, to encourage parents to have further thinking what best for their children, not the opposite. Avoiding not going to malls, but searching for an alternative to provide more chance for children in touch with nature.

I agree with and totally support the ‘liburan tanpa ke mall‘ movement. That’s why I always trying to find or create ‘more to nature’ activities, around home if possible, such as (you can also visit the related story at http://bugisumirat.wordpress.com/2011/12/11/melirik-sisi-edukasi-lingkungan-di-sekitar-kita-pengalaman-tinggal-di-kota-bogor/) :

  • Finding grasshopers (menangkap belalang)
  • Camping at front yard (kemping di depan rumah)
  • Planting trees (menanam bibit pohon)
  • Harvesting fruits in the yard (memanen buah-buahan di halaman)
  • etc

Yesterday (20/02/2014) I brought my son (and his friends) along to the river, again, because it was his second time in a row. Within these two days, we visited the river. The Ciapus river. It is located not too far, at the back of our housing complex – Pakuan Regency, Jl. Dramaga Raya, Bogor and only around 5 minutes cycling from home.

My son used to go to that river, but not his friends. It was so amazing looking how they were playing around the river – just close to the river bank and I kept watching on them for their safety.

They are around 6 – 7 years old and for my son’s friends, this is their first time to go to the river and playing around in it.

So, yesterday, after I came back from work, around 5 pm, me, my son and his friends were cycling to the river and ready to get wet.

I found they were so happy and of course they were wet but happy. They learnt what they were able to find in the river, such as water, stones, sands, grass, animals, birds, insects, including  traditional sand miners (we were lucky,  we found some of them were still working – so kids were learning the process of how the sands they used to see when using as building material come from).

Unfortunately we found also so many garbage in the river, but it was also a good time to inform them and to teach them not to throw their garbage to the river. I was happy when they were all yelling,”let’s don’t throw out our garbage to the river. they made the river dirty”. Good boys.

A cheap activity but it is so valuable, especially for children. The important thing is that they are happy of what they have been doing and they learn much from it.

Below are some photos of their valuable time spending in the river.

Bogor, 21 February 2014

@kangbugi

(Photos were taken from my private collection).

[Posted too at Kompasiana]

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