Coyote’s Guide to Connecting with Nature

This book, by Jon Young, Ellen Haas, and Evan McGown, is a thorough and well annotated guide on to how to mentor children in nature awareness.  The book is not meant for children to use, but is intended to support those of us in the role of instructors. It gives ideas for activities in nice, bite-sized pieces requiring very little prep time.  As a homeschooler, and in my role as “Scholar One” of Quercus Academy, that makes it an invaluable resource.

In a hand-wavy sort of way, the book gets at the core of what I learned from academic, peer-reviewed journal articles on a variety of cognitive-neuroscience studies. In a sense, their reasons are “all wrong” from the perspective of modern science, but the authors somehow manage to get the core wisdom “all right”.  I still struggle with wanting to tear out the section of the book that “explains” how and why this stuff should work, and ask them to rewrite it with proper references and citations. But then, perhaps, this is my bias, born of far too many academic degrees.

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