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Children and Nature

By Kristina Hulvershorn
As I’ve led children into the woods for a hike, I’ve heard some amazing things. Some beautiful and inspiring and some that break my heart. I was a kid who was gifted with loads of exposure to the natural world, whether digging in the dirt, planting seeds, or hiking in forests. As I look back, I realize what important and lasting gifts those were. Now that I’m grown and able to offer kids exposure to a beautiful forest regularly, I am often faced with the reality that many of the kids I meet think that nature is scary, gross, smelly, or simply a place they’d rather not go.
When kids resist nature, I double down on offering a new perspective. I work really hard to connect to children who have never been inside a forest, who are told they shouldn’t even play near the dirt or the grass, or …

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