Tuesday, September 20, 2011

“Every child should have mud pies, grasshoppers, water bugs, tadpoles,frogs, mud turtles, elderberries, wild strawberries, acorns, chestnuts, trees to climb. Brooks to wade, water lilies, woodchucks, bats, bees, butterflies, various animals to pet, hayfields, pinecones, rocks to roll, sand, snakes, huckleberries and hornets; and any child who has been deprived of these has been
deprived of the best part of...education.” Luther Burbank
I sometimes find myself telling the boys not to play in the dirt outside because I don't want to deal with the mess that it creates. I don't understand why everyone likes making mud cakes in my garden plot; why not in the neighbour's garden? Mud cakes are dirty, dusty and messy. The mud doesn't usually stay in the garden, but finds its way onto the sidewalks and grass. Clothes get dirty. Faces get dusty. Hair gets filthy.
Today, I found Joonas (once again) playing in the dirt. And you know what? I stopped myself from forbidding him. Kids are meant to explore and get dirty. They are meant to appreciate and have fun in the outdoors. They can't do that if they are never allowed to get dirty or sweaty or smelly. I shouldn't let my own laziness to help with the clean up afterwards stop them. So, I let him play.

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