Playgrounds can Reconnect Kids and Nature

Yes, that bathing beauty is me...

When I was growing up in the small town of Hoosick Falls, NY, we were fortunate to live in a very unique location.  Right next to door to our property was a large parcel of undeveloped, wooded land that was home to a stream and a pond. And right across the street from our house was an area affectionately referred to by town residents as the ‘athletic fields’.

 

A long narrow track of land virtually devoid of trees and other vegetation, it held the town’s basketball, baseball and softball fields as well as the community playground, swimming pool, skating rink and public golf course.

 

Where could my friends and I typically be found?  Hanging out in the …(read more on Native Plants & Wildlife Gardens).

 

7 thoughts on “Playgrounds can Reconnect Kids and Nature

  1. Hi Debbie!Loved your article about your home town,brought back many memories of playing in all the brooks and wooded area’s and the culverts that we could find!!I also remember going to my Grandmother Helen’s house in Eagle bridge and playing in her woods with all the wild flowers and different plant’s.I do remember some they were blood root,and a squirel’s root,Trillium and a small tiger lily!Gramma passed away 2 years ago and the house was sold.I hope the new owners are enjoying it as much as we did exploring in her woods,and swinging on the rope vines!Have a great day!Jo

    • Jo Anne, I definitely remember playing in the woods at your Gramma’s house and being so excited when we found bloodroot. We were thrilled by the way it ‘bleed’ when we broke it in two. I’m sorry to hear about your Gramma’s death, I certainly have fond memories of our time spent there.

      You might be happy to know I decided not use a photo of the two of us for this post. It was taken in the winter and we’re both rosy cheeked with our pointy hoods tied tightly around our heads. We look like two frozen pixies.

  2. Great article Debbie. I too remember playing in the woods as a kid. Playgrounds today seem funny to me, I’ve heard of the phenomenon you speak of where trees, etc. are off limits and labeled dangerous. Can’t think of anything stranger than that. Glad to hear that some places are moving back to a more natural space.

  3. Love the article, Debbie. Some of my fondest memories as a young child, pre-teen and teenager revolve around natural woods and other natural areas. I’m happy that I was able to provide similar experiences for my own kids as they were growing up. Unstructured time allows kids to use their imaginations … exactly what they need in our overly structured society.

    • Joene, I couldn’t agree more. When my kids were young I always tried to give them lots of free time. If you can get past the ‘I’m bored’ chant, good things usually happen.

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