So long, Nature
Is it fear of letting our kids play outdoors, an over-scheduled life, or the lure of the screen that is causing “Nature Deficit Disorder”? Richard Louv coined this term in his 2005 book, "Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature Deficit Disorder”. Louv said when people hear this unofficial term, “they're immediately familiar with the issue”. At the University of Guelph, associate professor Nathan Perkins and grad student Sarah McCans researched the role mothers play in exposing children to nature and found that moms have "very vague and powerful fears" when it comes to letting their kids play unsupervised outdoors. As a result, this generation of youngsters mostly experiences nature as a programmed experience. It seems to me that a prerequisite of environmental stewardship (and sustainable living) would be a deep connection with the natural environment. Are we unwittingly unplugging our children from the wonders of the outdoors?