EXTERNAL: Children’s connection with nature

A short article a number of years old from George Monbiot. I have seen a dolphin breaching and been startled by the rustle of a grass snake.. but I’ve never swam among phosphorescent plankton, so maybe I was on the borderline. My hometown, Burnie, wasn’t really a wild place to grow up, it was quite rural is parts and actually suburban really. I still managed to grow a connection with nature though. P’haps it was the rural-ness that did it, or the occasional adventures to not too distant semi-wild places, or perhaps the tarkine tigers that surged in population in (or perhaps that should be through) Burnie during my teenage-hood.

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“Since the 1970s the area in which children may roam without supervision has decreased by almost 90%. In one generation the proportion of children regularly playing in wild places in the UK has fallen from more than half to fewer than one in 10.”

“We don’t have to disparage the indoor world, which has its own rich ecosystem, to lament children’s disconnection from the outdoor world. But the experiences the two spheres offer are entirely different. There is no substitute for what takes place outdoors; not least because the greatest joys of nature are unscripted. The thought that most of our children will never swim among phosphorescent plankton at night, will never be startled by a salmon leaping, a dolphin breaching, the stoop of a peregrine, or the rustle of a grass snake is almost as sad as the thought that their children might not have the opportunity.”

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