Children have a lot to learn as they grow up, which we can often forget as adults. Nature is something that is often passed over when parents think about what they need to teach their children.
We may not remember all of the specifics so well. However, everything you know now, you mostly had to learn the foundational knowledge for as a child.
If you are reading these words with relative ease right now, you probably had a parent or teacher teach you. They sat down with you and helped you learn your vowels and consonants, how to spell, and how to read and form sentences.
If English is not your first language, perhaps you had to learn this yourself at a later date. Maybe you learned English as part of a move to an English-speaking country growing up. That more than likely took a lot of effort.
Yet, the form and format of how children learn is not always so easy to understand – or to get right.
Thankfully, we know that as children get older, it is important to help them learn the vital facts of life. In an appropriate manner. This ensures that they become more interested in the world and nature – and hold no illusions.
With that in mind, teaching kids about the natural world can be a fantastic place to start.
…But how do we start?
Of course, there is no better means of being introduced to animals than actually seeing them in the flesh!
A zoo can be a fantastic place for that. School trips to London Zoo, for instance, provide children with continual amazement, as they have one of the best collections of wildlife from around the world.
Visits like this provide opportunities for children to care for animals, as they increase awareness and education regarding the challenges they face.
Seeing your child’s eyes light up as they see a Lion or Tiger for the first time, for instance, can be a special moment to witness.
Image: Andrzej Mucka and Susanne Jutzeler from Pexels
Where Our Food Comes From
Of course, teaching children about the natural world is not just to help them have fun and learn, but also to understand the realities of life.
For instance, they may love eating beef burgers, or really enjoy drinking milk and having it in their cereal.
Yet it can be hard for them to know where this is sourced unless they are told, and unless you visit farms or a zoo as part of a school trip or as part of a family adventure.
Of course, telling them about the realities of the abattoir is not appropriate for them at a young age, but ensuring they know that animals are the source of much of what we eat can be important – even if you live in a vegetarian household.
The Natural World
Teaching our children of the natural world can be a worthwhile thing to do.
For instance, letting them know that wild animals are not to be approached, such as raccoons or badgers, can help them stay wary and warn you if they spot one in the garden.
It can also be worthwhile to tell them of how the world works in an appropriate manner. For instance, their teddy bear represents a phenomenal creature that is strong and even sometimes ferocious in its natural habitat.
When we can help them learn more about the world and the natural hierarchy within, the more informed they can be in the long run.
Remember to try to proactively teach your children about the wonderful, and sometimes quite intimidating natural world around us. Just be sure to cater your lessons for their age group, as appropriate.
Images: Andrzej Mucka and Susanne Jutzeler from Pexels