As a teacher and as a parent, I have discovered this magic: When the kids are sad or too loud or when fights break out, taking the kids outside seems to fix everything, especially if running water, sand or soil is involved. At our school when the children spill out into the yard and garden, a sudden calm descends. At home, in the evening “arsenic hour,” playing on the grass erases our daughter’s distress. Though parking kids in front of the TV is one way to keep them busy, there are many reasons why sending them out to play is better for their development , especially if you come along and teach them about the plants, animals and natural materials found there.
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