Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The world is good

“The World is Good” and how Nature can help us.

What I know as a Waldorf early childhood educator is that in the first 7 years, a child needs to have a foundational 'knowing' that the world is good. When something bad happens, we focus on the helpers—like fire fighters in a fire, for example. Since we know young children learn through imitation—a deep imitation, it is on us to somehow get to that inner sense ourselves that “the world is good” .
It is not always easy! Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by what is going on in the news.” The world? Not so good,” I think.
When I feel that overwhelm, I have to remember that I work with young babies and toddlers who are just coming into this world. They are just discovering things like stones, trees, bark, mud, flowers, worms, honey bees, butterflies. What a wondrous, magical place this world is!
I tell the parents I work with that if their child is out of sorts and really fussy, try going outside. I say “Mother Nature is a good mother”. 
When I step outside and smell the air, feel the breeze, regard the clouds, Its like I slip into a new gear--the rhythm of Nature, of the seasons. Chronological time suspends and a sense of well being arrives. I experience the mothering of Nature.  This is the foundational feeling that the world is good. This is what we can give our children.

Try working a regular 'walk' into your schedule with your toddler. I put quotes on walk because this kind of nature walk is  about what they discover on the way so you may only make it a half a block and back!

Be childlike discover nature with your child. Cultivate a sense of wonder with her. Rediscover that the world is good.

Rachel Carson
"If a child is to keep his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement, and mystery of the world we live in."