Children and Nature

Making Connections

Edited by George K. Russell

Available to buy

Quick Look

  • Addresses head-on the challenges of the digital age in relation to child development
  • Contributions are a wonderful mix of inspirational and authoritative
  • Includes essays from well-known thinkers Richard Lewis, Richard Louv and David Sobel

Twelve inspirational and challenging essays on how to help children connect with their natural surroundings.

228 x 150 mm
Myrin Institute
Parenting & Child Health
144 pages
Publication date:
01 Jan 2014


In our digital age, it's especially important that children connect with nature and their surroundings.

The twelve essays in this book explore how this connection can be nurtured, enriched and enhanced by parents and teachers. The contributions are a wonderful mix of the personal and inspirational alongside authoritative expertise and challenging ideas. The contributors range from university professors to journalists, teachers, healers, parents and poets, and include well-known thinkers Richard Lewis, Richard Louv and David Sobel.

This is a rich and varied collection in which any carers or teachers will find inspiration.

Table of Contents

Making Connections: The need and the challenge by George K. Russell
Leave No Child Inside: The growing movement to reconnect children and nature by Richard Louv
The Human Touch by Lowell Monke
Look, Don't Touch: The problem with environmental education by David Sobel
An Indian Father's Plea by Medicine Grizzlybear Lake
Tokens of Mystery by Scott Russell Sanders
Lessons of a Starry Night by Kelly McMasters
Cradle by Pattiann Rogers
Toddlers to Tweens: Relearning how to play by Stephanie Hanes
The Privilege of Gardening with Children by Carolyn Jabs
Words Full of Wonder by James E. Higgins
A Wilderness of Thought: Childhood and the poetic imagination


'A generation that spends, on average, 7 hours 38 minutes each day on some sort of screen wil have no time for quiet immersion in a natural setting, no time to play in nature, no time to experience the tides or resurgence of life in the spring.'
-- George K. Russell

'Children come to know a tree by peeling its bark, climbing its branches, sitting under its shade, jumping into its piled-up leaves. Just as important, these firsthand experiences are enveloped by feelings and associations -- muscles being used, sun warming the skin, blossoms scenting the air. The computer cannot even approximate any of this.'
-- Lowell Monke

'Nature programs should invite children to make mud pies, climb trees, catch frogs, paint their faces with charcoal, get their hands dirty and their feet wet... Between the ages of six and twelve, learning about nature is less important than simply getting children out into nature.'
-- David Sobel


George K. Russell is a long-standing member of the Biology Department of Adelphi University in Garden City, New York. He is the author of Laboratory Investigations in Human Physiology, which directs study of the student's own physiology without the need to use animals in the lab. He was one of the founders of Orion magazine and its Editor-in-Chief from 1982-2002. He lives on Long Island, New York.

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