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Posted on Oct 8, 2011

Dirty and Injured..

Dirty and Injured..

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Backin the day when we homeschooled, a parenting schoolgraduate of mine (and dear friend) took the kids for 10 hours a weekto explore the world. Yael would take my three darlings out to nature trails,places of work, and anywhere that magnetized them, to learn from the serendipitousmagic of whatever came up. My directions to her were always the same, “Forme to consider this day with you a successful one, you are required to dotwo things: return my children to me dirty and injured”..

That’sall I ever wanted from her. To return my children to me dirty and injured.Dirty and injured, to me, means that my kids engaged their bodies, exploredtheir world; touched, tasted, smelled, and saw the important stuff. Dirty andinjured, for me, means my children moved their bodies and were moved by nature.I always tell parents in my parenting groups on the radio show I had back before becoming a nomadic family;” kids are meant to fall off bikes andfall out of trees”.
Ibelieve that is something we have forgotten about.
Kidsare supposed to fall down (and learn to get up); they are supposed to get dirty(so don’t buy them designer brand names you’ll be upset if they soil).聽 Our children will have the rest of their livesto sit quietly behind a screen and work and be responsible, and be organized, andclean.

Now, is their time to be children. Messy, curious, inventive, creative, noisy, dirty,children. Children who are in contact with Mother Earth and with their bodies;children who engage their imaginations.

Here are some pictures from an afternoon around the cabana. We are in Alto Boquete inNorthern Panama, and my kids are doing exactly what they are supposed to bedoing.

It may seem mundane and boring, but for me, this is the exciting stuff: that my kids can still be highly entertained, by themselves, outside, for hours in the dirt. I love it!聽

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Comments

comments

6 Comments

  1. this is great. we have comments!!!

  2. So many parents hover around their kids, even at the playground! I have tried to limit my hovering and if my boys ask me if they can do something, like jump off something high I always tell them they can if they feel comfortable doing it. They usually take a second to evaluate the scenario and then most of the time they jump!

  3. My Great Aunt always used to tell us that a dirty child is a happy child – and, in my role as a grandmother to a very energetic 20 month old, I sww it as my jjob to educate him in all things messy!!! 馃榾 xx

  4. Amy, Hi It's Gabi. So true. Hovering does not allow them to grow from all the great lessons they are supposed to learn from falling; like defining self-limits, the courage to try, making mistakes. Good for you. I also encourage them to decide, but mine just pause a second and usually, jump. It is then that I just turn my head and pray.

  5. Wendi! I love it. So many grandparents expect their kids to be properly-behaved little adults. how wonderful that you encourage yours to be a kid! what a concept! Gabi

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