A couple years ago I read Charlotte Mason’s first volume. One of her strong recommendations was to get take the children outside for six or more hours every day regardless of the weather. At the time it didn’t seem realistic, but I’ve been contemplating it ever since.
While six hours doesn’t fit into my busy schedule, I recently rearranged my schedule so we can head outside to a local park full of wildlife for 2 or 3 hours most afternoons. There have been many wonderful benefits of doing a daily nature walk with the children.
5 Benefits of a Daily Nature Walk
1. More Energy
We live in the cloudy rainy Pacific Northwest where vitamin D deficiency is a real issue. Daily nature hikes take the children and me outside in the sun and fresh air. While I was feeling a bit run down a couple weeks ago, now my energy is back. I’m ready to take on the day! The kids are more cheerful themselves.
2. Kids are Calmer
My youngest two children are calmer during the day. The morning hours are spent playing, doing morning time, and school work followed by lunch and quiet time. Knowing they’re about to head outside to explore and play the rest of the afternoon helps settle them down. They’re not bouncing off the walls!
3. Uninterrupted Time
When we go on the nature hikes, all distractions are left behind. There’s no phone summoning me to answer it. No social media to check. No household chores to do. No math to teach. There are no other demands for my attention. It’s purely time with the kids.
Walking around our local lake has allowed us to take nature study into the wild. We’ve seen fry (baby fish) swimming against the current of a stream, ducklings swimming along the bank followed by their mother, and turtles sunbathing on a log. We examined a slug’s antennae. The walks are full of rocks thrown, water splashed, and sticks collected. I’ve discovered I need to educate myself by reading The Nature Handbook so I can answer questions the children ask.
5. Sleep Better
My little girl has been having regular nightmares and waking during the night. Nothing we’ve tried has helped… until now. We started nature walks and a couple days later she started sleeping through the night. Woo Hoo! Then I allowed myself to get distracted and we stopped for two weeks. The nightmares came back. We’re back to nature hikes, and she’s sleeping through the night again.Make time for nature walks in your life.Click To Tweet
Daily nature walks have made a wonderful difference in our lives. We’re happier, more energetic, learning about nature, and sleeping better. It’s a awesome change to our schedule I’ll be keeping for many years.
Does your family enjoy regular nature walks?