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Children & Nature



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NEEF-CNI-Infographic


I recently came across this ‘infographic’ published by the National Environmental Education Foundation highlighting the importance of an active, outdoor lifestyle for children. I always love coming across these resources because they are so applicable to Camp, providing statistics that represent and reinforce the benefits of a week away. We all have fallen victim to the pandemic of being perpetually plugged-in. Summer camp provides the perfect opportunity to beat this bad habit. At camp, children can interact with their environment and create positive connections with the natural world. They can fish instead of Facebook, put down the controller and pick up a canoe paddle. During mission work camps, youth spend the week replacing Wakeya screens instead of staring into a computer screen. This “detachment of human from habitat” was coined the “Nature Deficit Disorder” by writer Richard Louv in 2005. In his book, Last Child in the Woods, Louv argues that certain behavioral problems could be attributed to the “sharp decline” in how little time children now spend outdoors. Furthermore, Louv offers that “nowhere than in nature do kids use their senses in such a stimulated way.” A week at camp immerses children (and adults!) in nature and allows for some much-needed natural wonder. Additional Nature Initiative Resources:

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