Slice of Life #4 – Nature, For Real, So Cool

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Whooo-hoo-hoo-hoooooo!

Whooo-hoo-hoo-hoooooo!

My students and I sat in complete and utter silence, spellbound as we listened to a recording of two Great Horned Owl’s having a conversation high up in the branch’s of the trees of our neighborhood park.

“Is this real nature?” Abner asked.

“Yes,” I whispered.

Later, as we dissected owl pelletts in the science lab, Abner again asked, “Is this real nature?”

“Yes,  Abner, of course, all nature is real nature.”

“But not so much at school,” he said.

“What do you mean?”

“Well, we don’t have any bugs or worms in our grass on the playground and my mom said it’s because the grass isn’t real and the flowers in our playhouse don’t smell and Ella said it’s because they are just pretend.   So I just wanted to make sure that this owl stuff is real.”

“Yes, Abner, this owl stuff is real nature.”

“I knew nature was going to be cool.”

GULP.

Tomorrow I’m ditching my lesson plans and we’re walking to the park to dig for real bugs and smell real flowers and roll down real grass hills and breathe real fresh air and see real nature.

I know it’s going to be cool.

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19 thoughts on “Slice of Life #4 – Nature, For Real, So Cool

  1. mlvteach

    I absolutely love this post! I teach in a rural area, where you would think that children would get out and dig for worms and catch crayfish in the creek, but they don’t. The majority of them play computer games. I really hope your students appreciated the trip to the park.

  2. Wow! Nature is cool! Where I live the students do not often spend a lot of time “in nature” either, mostly because of the heat, but when they do they always enjoy it. Good for you, for taking up the challenge of teaching the whole child!

  3. lgrainger125

    So many of the children we teach live in a “artificial world” devoid of the messy stuff. I hope you have a great time digging in the dirt.

  4. Seize the moment! Kids do not have enough experiences like the ones you’re providing. In my school, there are virtually none in third grade due to testing requirements and having to cover “curriculum.” I am in constant wonder about where we are going.

  5. shaggerspicchu

    It is terrifying. I also wrote about my worries about the children in today’s generation as well.

    I am so glad to hear that you are bring your children outside! They don’t get it enough.

  6. Love your post! I am constantly shocked by the questions of young minds. So many assumptions. Thanks for sharing your story; it made me smile and sigh simultaneously.

  7. Well, that’s perspective, isn’t it? Just not the one we want our students to have. Glad that you are changing your plans to incorporate more nature into their lives! 🙂

  8. Can I be in your class? Sounds like a fun day of adventure! I am scared too. Some of them have never been inside a post office. Or mailed a letter. I have a class full of kids who play an app called “pancake”….. you flip a pancake. You tap a poorly drawn frying pan and try to flip the fake pancake. They dislike my class… because it gets in the way of Pancake.

  9. It will be a while before anyone can roll down hills and dig for bugs in my world. Now it is white and windy, but yet there is wonderful nature to be discovered. Poor kids having to ask if it’s real. But then so much of life as they know it is not real. I hope you share the real discoveries you make tomorrow.

  10. Right on! (About going out bug hunting, that is)
    I try to take my little girl out as much as I can; to the zoo, museums, anywhere. I’m looking to start a garden for my family soon, which I’m hoping she’ll have a blast with as it grows 🙂

  11. I love this today! I love his persistent questioning and the underlying need for it to be real. Thanks for writing, for dissecting and for rolling down hills with your students!

  12. Providing your children with an authentic look at real nature and how it connects to the real world is really awesome. Engaging students in passionate studies is the way to go!

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