Kids & Nature - Community Engagement with the Haverford College Arboretum
Spending time in nature is a crucial component of childhood development. Learn more about how to cultivate a connection with nature at the Haverford College Arboretum!
Spending time in nature is a critical component of childhood development. A child’s relationship with nature can shape the rest of their life. Nature provides innumerable advantages to physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional health and can enhance academic ability. Time to play in nature allows children to develop higher levels of creativity, curiosity, resilience, and even happiness. Moreover, studies have shown that nature-based education can increase knowledge and understanding of core school subjects, including science and math. Spending a significant amount of time in nature as a child is a known indicator of future environmental care and stewardship. Time spent in nature fosters a child’s connection to nature, enabling them to maintain a higher level of environmental awareness, identify the value of nature, and become more inclined to protect it. Despite all of this, children today spend increasingly less time outdoors (a phenomenon described by Richard Louv in The Last Child in the Woods).
At the Haverford College Arboretum, our programming and events work toward filling this gap, cultivating environmental engagement and time spent in nature. Past Arboretum events have included early childhood programming exploring nature, school tours, and storytime at the climbing tree. Our annual, family-friendly, Fall Festival is coming up on October 26th, and it is a great opportunity to learn more about the Arboretum and have fun in nature! Along with upcoming events, exploring the Arboretum is another exciting way to spend time outdoors. On your next visit, check out the Duck Pond to see what birds, fish, and other wildlife you can see, walk a portion of the Nature Trail (check out the Trail Head near HCA to look for deer), sit under the majestic Treaty Elm, or explore the impressive trees in the Pinetum! Whether it be through programming or on your own, enjoy as many family adventures in nature as possible and continue growing a stronger connection with our environment!