Thursday, 31 July 2014

How much independence should children have? - Features - Health & Families - The Independent

How much independence should children have? - Features - Health & Families - The Independent

" In 2001, as adult supervision seemed to be extending into every aspect of children's lives, Frank Furedi wrote the seminal 'Paranoid Parenting'. Now, as a mother who let her nine-year-old go to the park alone is jailed for abandonment, he realises that the problem is far worse than even he imagined then."

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Outdoor Education: Children develop sensory integration skills - Fosters

Outdoor Education: Children develop sensory integration skills - Fosters

Read more from the link above.

'....... That's when Hanscom noticed children weren't playing outdoors anymore..... Hanscom said playing and moving outdoors is critical to a child's development. Simply playing in the mud and catching frogs, for example, develops strong sensory integration. Rolling down hills or climbing trees develops one's vestibular system. Even something as simple as listening to birds chirping in the distance helps with orienting body space....... It clicked: Children are suffering sensory problems because they aren't outside enough.

Natural-terrain schoolyards reduce children’s stress, says CU-Boulder study | University of Colorado Boulder

Natural-terrain schoolyards reduce children’s stress, says CU-Boulder study | University of Colorado Boulder

Read more from the link above.

"Playing in schoolyards that feature natural habitats and trees and not just asphalt and recreation equipment reduces children’s stress and inattention, according to a University of Colorado Boulder study."

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Max Michaels super cat

Usually I will only post about nature, play and playspaces on this blog however this is an extra special occasion.

Our cat Max has been entered into the Whiskas Big Cat Competition and is using that huge personality of his to work his way up from the bottom. So far he's been excluded because someone reported him for? No explanation given, Reinstated, with no explanation given. Pretty good for a one-eyed cat !!! (whose photo is not even Photoshopped?-- OK we're not going to mention that, nor the fact that some entries have obviously bought votes, yep, won't mention that either). Thank you to those 29 people that have voted for him already and the 7 marvelous people who shared his endeavors on their profile so other cat lovers (or even social cat lovers) could vote for him.  Max says if he wins then the money will go to the Cat Protection Society, based in Enmore, Sydney..... Please vote for him and share it in your profiles. You can also see more of Max here or read his bio below.

Max Michaels is 63% Big Cat!
Please click the link above to vote for Max Michaels to help us win one of five $5000 prizes from WHISKAS

About Max Michaels
Max arrived out of nowhere on my birthday. He was obviously a scavenger and a survivor. His body was criss-crossed with scars and wounds and his tail was black with dried blood and he smelt like a garbage bin. His left eye was watering and he was obviously starving. Although we already owned a cat there was no way we could take him to a cat shelter as they would put him down. A visit to the cat ophthalmologist, An operation to remove his crushed eye, multiple visits to the vet and he is now a loving, affectionate, one eyed wonder who is known and loved throughout the neighbourhood.

Gallery of Max

Friday, 20 June 2014

Exploring nature and natural concepts

I was at a consult today and was asked by an educator about introducing and extending natural concepts in and out of the classroom. There is a wealth of information about how to introduce nature to preschool and school age children to be found on the internet. Specifically I find a lot on social networking sites like Pinterest. Green Grubs Garden Club
is New Zealand based page that has heaps of resources, specifically items created by educators that can be purchased at their store on Teachers pay Teachers and additional pages and links that they curate.

Later in the day I came across another Sydney based business Gecko Toys that blew me away with its range of natural resources for indoors and outdoors. I love their range of Gnomes/Forest people,
Fairy Houses and also their extensive range of accessories

and Anamalz. I was considering buying the Either the Australian Animals or Dino pack series to decorate the dashboard of the car.

 I am also happy to see that they distribute the TWIGZ range of childrens gardening gear. Aside from the specifically child sized Montessori Services range they are some of the more robust and evenly priced tools I have come across in my travels.

So, a few ideas there that can, if utilised properly, be extended into a complete nature philosophy