Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Visiting the Fish Hatchery and the Need For Nature

This past week I visited the Alouetter River Managements Fish Hatchery next to Alco Park here in beautiful Maple Ridge.
I took my kindergarten class there on a typically rainy day. It was wonderful to stand in the rain and watch the men holding up the chum, and the incredibly scarlet coloured sockeye, for us to see, as the Alouette River went tumbling by. The forest across the river was so peaceful and green.
My students asked lots of interesting questions and were excited to share their knowledge of salmon and their life cycle. They knew that they found their home stream by smell and so much more.
This trip was meaningful for me as I grew up on the banks of the Alouette, it was where I went to play as a child. Seeing the salmon come up stream to spawn each year was a part of my lifes rhythm.
Today it is difficult for some children to be connected to the earth and nature as they are not allowed outside to play. This brought to mind a video I had just seen on youtube and added to my PamelaSunshineTV channel as a favourite.
It speaks of Nature Deficit Disorder and how this is impacting the physical and mental health of children and in fact, humans as a whole. Children are not just running around playing outside, they are being put into organized sports, which is not the same.
I found it pretty fascinating so I thought I would add it here so visitors to my blog could share it too. There is a restorative power found in nature that brings peace into human life, green views bring stress levels down. We are hardwired to feel safe and open in nature.
Children are kept inside, often due to fears for their safety. We need to make efforts to get kids outside, to allow them to experience outside play. When outside, children can be free of being organized and are empowered to create their own experiences.
The outdoors can help to heal us and this video has some great information, I hope you enjoy it.

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