Events: Being A Kid In Nature
Chris Ousse is one of our wonderful teachers here at Fox Haven. Fox Walkers and Youth Foraging programs are his specialties, bringing childlike wonder to our woods and land. We caught up with him this week to talk about his childhood memories and the importance of nature in our children’s lives.
What is your favorite childhood memory from time spent in nature?
My favorite season is not winter, it is my least favorite. However, all my favorite childhood memories are of winter in nature…
…adventuring off from the path at the age of 12 to venture by myself, I followed a trickling icky stream that spread under a large mature patch of mountain laurel bushes. An ice/mix storm melted and froze the mountain laurel evergreen into an infused ice canopy. The scattered light from the afternoon sun refracted colored sparkles in the melting ice. I remember feeling I was living an adventure, to see what lead down this tunnel was a good feeling of danger. On this day I found something that has always been a wonderful and lasting feeling… I crawled thru where no one bigger could go to see.
Why is spending time in nature important for children’s development?
When children continue to connect with the sensory feast of nature we increase perspective about ourselves to a growing clarity. Healthy natural environmental stimulation promotes growth across all developmental domains and a love for the natural world we are.
What is your favorite lesson that nature has to offer?
My favorite lesson in nature is that it is never completely what people say it is. There is an untold story under ever rock. Nature moves with evolving creature diversity like an expanding library to hold.