Natural green areas are important for children
It is particularly important for nearby nature to be within children’s reach, as they are active closer to home than the adults. Children often enjoy spending time in natural green areas, where rocks, trees, streams and trails develop important motor skills for learning as they come into contact with the natural world. Family trips into nature strengthen a child’s relationship with nature, and in turn, this relationship with nature will affect how interesting the nature is during adult years.
As a child, I used to cycle with my friend to play in the nearby forest. My “home” was a mossy tussock next to a one-and-a-half-metre tall spruce, whereas my friend’s “home” was at the foot of a pine tree. As suppertime approached, I would ride back home with pine needles in my hair and mud under my fingernails. Last summer, after a very long break, I returned to this same place in the forest. The forest trails we used to ride our bikes along had become overgrown, but our “homes” were still there, now shrouded by trees many metres tall. As I left the area, I had a big smile on my face, wind in my hair and needles in my jumper.