Nature walks and exploring the outdoors with our daughter has been my favorite activity of the summer so far – and maybe hers too.
Maria Montessori noted the importance of outdoors and nature for the development of children (and had a great quote on the topic that you can read in whole at the bottom of this post).
Nowadays, with the way most of the world has lost touch with nature and the outdoors, I’m sure Dr. Montessori would be stressing the importance of spending time in nature more than she did back in the early 1900s.
Simone Davies (author of The Montessori Toddler) put it perfectly: “Nature has the ability to calm us, to connect us with beauty, and to reconnect us to the earth and environment.”
Not only can nature walks be great for children and sensory learning, I’ve found that it’s a great way to work on Gross Motor Skills.
Our daughter, ‘K’, has been walking up and down hills, picking up sticks and rocks, and climbing over fallen trees.
The Montessori Approach To Nature Walks
Dr. Montessori said the child should be able to go for walks, be guided by what appeals to them, and move from one discovery from another.
While staying nearby, we’ve been using the Montessori approach of letting K explore nature on her own.
Allowing her to enjoy nature walks the way she wants seems like a great way to promote independence and freedom.
And when a tree has fallen down in your path and you can make your way over it, you can’t help but be proud of yourself.
These nature walks aren’t only beneficial for the child, either.
Studies have shown the numerous physical and mental health benefits of outdoor walks for adults, too!
All in all, nature walks are great for everyone and every child should be able to enjoy them.
We are lucky enough to have a small trail in our neighborhood, but if we didn’t have that luxury I would make sure that I planned some nature adventure trips regularly.
To finish this post off, here is one of my favorite Maria Montessori quotes: