Thursday, July 13, 2006

Nature-deficit disorder


…HA considers camping to be a misguided form of entertainment, but she does love to putter in her half-dead desert garden and muck about in her koi pond.

…Best Friends is a wonderful animal shelter organization in Utah. Its magazine is worth a donation. It’s a riot. www.bestfriends.org.

…In the July/August issue, Richard Louv, a futurist, talks about children and nature.
The same applies to post-children.

…When children are under “house arrest,” he says, they miss an important element of life—being outside in nature.

…For tens of thousands of years, children have played outside. Now, kids will become adults with no yen for, or understanding, of the natural world.

…Some young people were asked to just go outside and look at the sky. One said, it had motivated him. Another said it relieved stress.

…Louv spent his childhood in a woods behind his house with his collie looking for turtles and snakes. He said he had an intense sense of ownership of those woods. Yet, he knew nothing about the Amazon rain forest.

…Now, he says, kids know about the Amazon rain forest, but not about any real woods near them.

…Parents can’t or don’t want to let them out alone because of abductions. No treehouses—what about lawsuits?

…His own kids don’t even have the freedom he had.

…He suggests that hyperactivity may partially result from separation from nature.

…Children should at least have pets.

…Yet, kids yearn for that which they never had. They can hardly bear to think about global warming and the destruction of certain species. It’s too painful. They tell you that, Louv remarks.

…Get involved in scouting, he urges. Take the kids into the woods. Make your own backyard a wildlife refuge—water, food, and shelter.

…HA saw a dragonfly on her pond the other morning. Gorgeous. Shimmery.

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