Are Our Kids Connecting With Nature?
One recent research project found that only one in five children in the UK are “connected to nature.” The research, conducted by The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), found that only 21 percent of the 8-to-12-year-olds who participated had a realistic and achievable connection with wildlife and nature, according to BBC’s report on this by Matt McGrath.
“Nature is in trouble, and children’s connection to nature is closely linked to this. The recent State of Nature report shows that nature in the UK is being lost at a dramatic rate. We can all take action to put nature back into childhood, to ensure young people have better lives and a better future,” said RSPB Chief Executive Dr. Mike Clarke on the organization’s website.
Identifying and measuring how much “connection to nature” our children have or don’t have hasn’t been done before to this degree, and, no doubt, there may be some disagreements about what the ideal connection level should be. However, putting that aside, the results are worth considering.
Think about it. How badly will our children want to preserve parks, forests, lakes and rivers if they don’t play in them now? Will they want to save endangered species of plants or animals that they’ve never heard of or even seen?