The Importance of Nature Based Play
It should be the natural birth right of every child around the world to express themselves through their play in safe rich outdoor spaces. All children should be allowed to spend time playing in natural wild places where they are free to imagine and explore in nature. Play is the work of children; it is an innate creative process that allows children to immerse themselves in their own stories and inner worlds. In these moments, children are completely absorbed in their ‘work’ and lose all sense of time and place, they are often in an imaginary world that most adults have no understanding of.
It is through these early experiences in childhood where our strongest links to nature are made, our sense of adventure is created and our ability to interact and negotiate with others is established. All of which are essential in shaping a healthy adult life.
We believe Global Gardens of Peace gardens can be places where children and families can have time to play and delight in the natural world, where they will be surrounded by plants and free to immerse themselves in their imaginary worlds. The gardens will focus on nature based experiences including water play, forest thickets, plant tunnels, sand play, rock mazes and water rills.
A series of more traditional play structures will provide a range of challenges for the young up to the adolescent that will provide opportunities for physical exertion and social interaction and most importantly, opportunities to have fun.
Finally for these gardens to be successful they must also provide facilities for a broader cross section of the community including the elderly, youth and the parents and carers of the children. These facilities could include a cafe, meeting places, seating areas, shade structures, BBQ facilities, playing courts and games.