A SENSE OF WONDER
There Was a Child Went Forth
There was a child every day;
And the first object he look'd upon,
that object he became; And that
object became part of him for the day,
or a certain part of the day, or for many
years, or stretching cycles of years.
— Walt Whitman
Children are realists. They want to experience things first hand. When children are studying their environment and its wonders, life becomes a little more understandable and touchable to them.
Even more appealing to children is the fact that learning outdoors is fun and gives them a feeling of having a good time while learning. Children know that realities turn them on: The realities of sun and wind and rain; of a calf that licks your hand when you feed her, rows of corn that can mean corn roasts later on; of mountains to climb that challenge young muscles, and of subsistence training which test knowledge of wilderness roots, berries and plants.
Writer, Researcher, Biologist, and grandmother wrote the following in her book A Sense of Wonder:
A child's world is fresh and new and beautiful
full of wonder and excitement. It is our misfortune that for most of us
that clear-eyed vision, that true instinct for what is beautiful and awe-inspiring
is dimmed and even lost before we reach adulthood.
If I had influence with the good fairy who is supposed to preside over the christening of all children I should ask her gift to each child in the world be a sense of wonder so indestructible that it would last throughout life, as an unfailing antidote against the boredom and disenchantments of later years, the sterile preoccupation with things that are artificial, the alienation from the sources of our strength.
— Rachel Carson
NC PARENT SHARES HER FEELINGS :
“Hey mom, I found three salamanders today – they
were so cool. One had spots on it.
Can I do that again tomorrow?”
Nature Camps is unique. In identifying specific needs of every child at Nature Camps, counselors find new
ways to do what they already do well. First, they identify the strengths of individual children. Secondly,
they make use of the knowledge that children influence one another. As children discover their sources of strength, they create positive influences upon each other. Counselors help fulfill a child’s need to be recognized and celebrated. By the end of a typical camp day, children have done many novel things, bringing forth remarkable happiness.