March 28, 2012

The art of enjoying nature

Children should be encouraged to watch, patiently and quietly, until they learn something of the habits and history of bee, ant, wasp, spider, hairy caterpillar, dragon-fly, and whatever of larger growth comes in their way. (Charlotte Mason ~ Vol 1, II, Out-Of-Door Life For The Children, p.57 )


With a broad smile beaming from a dirt-smeared face, my youngest son excitedly tugs my hand and points to the ground. He has found a big black ant.

Together we watch the ant crawl along the garden box. I gently nudge a couple facts into our simple conversation but mostly just let him observe. He is fascinated by the little creature. And I am elated by his delight.

Wesley is no stranger to dirt - in fact, he has mastered the art of playing in it. But Grant, on the other hand, struggles to still his mind and body long enough to observe the nature around him and play with imagination. What a blessing it is that Wesley very happily models such play for Grant... and I do believe Grant is slowly (very slowly, but surely) picking it up.

Photobucket  Photobucket

However, I am still mastering the "mother culture" of allowing my boys to roll around in the dirt... I think it's time we get a sandbox. :)

We can't make a child smart,  but we can make sure that his brain is fortified with pure, healthy blood, and  that his mind is nourished with productive ideas. (Charlotte Mason ~ Vol 5 paraphrase pg 142)


O Lord, how manifold are Your works! In wisdom have You made them all; the earth is full of Your creatures. Here is the sea, great and wide, which teems with creatures innumerable, living things both small and great. Psalm 104:24-25 

All creatures of our God and King
Lift up your voice and with us sing,
Alleluia! Alleluia!
Thou burning sun with golden beam,
Thou silver moon with softer gleam!
O praise Him! O praise Him!
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
~ St. Francis of Assisi
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