Sunday, November 18, 2012

Fall Leaves

"Children are born naturalists. They explore the world with all of their senses, experiment in the environment, and communicate their discoveries to those around them."
-The Audubon Nature Preschool

The leaves have begun falling from our large tree. Over the long weekend, they blanketed the entirety of the ground beneath the tree. Before Amy raked them into pathways, the kids and I made it outside to explore. IS spent much of his time with his own small rake. He focused on dragging it behind him and delighted in the leaves getting stuck to its teeth. Every now and then he would stop to remove all the leaves then begin again. 
Lately our time outside has been mostly pudding splashing, so the fallen leaves were a nice change for us. 

HH and VR enjoyed holding hands as they stomped through the leaves. They both enjoyed crushing the leaves beneath their boots. As they approached the blacktop they took a few steps onto it then turned around to wade back into the sea of leaves. As I stood and watched all three children work and play among the leaves I was reminded of Briana's recent post which highlights how amazing it is to allow children to have an intimate relationship with nature. This relationship with nature leads to respecting our environment, a desire to engage with the world around us, a love for all the elements, and an appreciation for the amazing moments nature offers us.
I have always seen nature as a calming force both for myself and the children. When we are needing to move big and be loud we head outside where there is plenty of room to do just that. However, watching the boys in the leaves today reminded me of the focused exploration that happens outside too. The boys moved their boots gingerly through the leaves finding the spot that felt just right for crushing. IS carefully pulled his rake, watching it closely to see how many leaves it had collected so far. Nature offered us calm in the form of a chance to engage closely with it.

Later the infants found a moment to be outside and everyone was transfixed by the leaves moving and falling from the maple tree.  A few leaves were found by hands or fell down from the tree.  The magic of the tree and the wind and the falling leaves left us all settled for the rest of our day.

1 comment:

  1. Love this post - the little ones lying in the leaves look so cute & happy, Kierna