Monday 23rd May 2016
The development of empathy, sympathy and a heightened sense of touch (to name but a few) are grounded in the exploration of the natural world. I was saddened to hear recently that our 21st century children very rarely play in a natural environment, make daisy chains, dam streams, play with mud pies or watch bees collecting nectar. At Melbourne Montessori School we believe in the value of all of these things and more. We ensure that children are shown the joy of finding worms in the garden, of following a trail of ants and of caring for creatures and their habitats. We know the benefits of planting a seed, watering and caring for a young seedling and nurturing it until it blossoms into a broad bean plant or strawberry plant. Young children, older students and adults too, find that being in a natural environment (or even viewing scenes of nature) seems to reduce feelings of anger, fear and stress and increases pleasant feelings. Exploration of natural habitats, going for a walk and collecting autumn leaves, watching animals and trees, mindfully, genuinely feeling stones, grass, bark, petals not only makes you feel better emotionally, it can contribute to your physical wellbeing, reducing blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension and the production of stress hormones.
Each week for the next four weeks, I am going to list 12 things which Nature Play suggest you need to do before you are 12 years old!
- Climb a tree
- Sleep under the stars (even in your backyard)
- Learn to swim
- Build a cubby/den outside or a tree house
- Find a geocache in your neighbourhood
- Go beach combing after a storm
- Cook damper in a camp fire
- Go on a school camp in the bush
- Catch a wave (even a small one)
- Play chasey in the rain
- Catch a yabbie in a river (or have fun trying to)
- Make something with things you find outside
Wendy and Peter Pan
Come along and see the pirates and flying children in the Melbourne Montessori Players annual production which begins this Friday at the Phoenix Theatre!
AGM Tomorrow Night !
The Board welcomes and encourages all members to attend tomorrow’s Annual General Meeting in the Hall at the Brighton Campus.
To help us get a sense of numbers for an AGM quorum, we would appreciate it if you could RSVP by email, if you are attending, for catering purposes. Thank you to those members who have already replied.
“We teachers can only help the work going on, as servants wait upon a master .” Maria Montessori