Little kids get so excited about the smallest things. Have you ever seen a group of third graders react to finding a frog? You would think they discovered a unicorn. I know this because I worked at a nature reserve this summer that was a popular place for elementary school field trips. I was potting some native dogwood species and I found a frog that wandered its way into the garage, so I walked it down to the pond where a field trip was occurring. The kids were SO excited because some of them had never seen a real live frog before. They had never caught minnows with a net in the pond, never learned anything about salamanders or turtles, they had never done any of the typical little kid outdoor activities because they didn’t have access to the outdoors that wasn’t a suburb development with landscaped backyards. But as soon as they were given a chance to explore, they were hooked.
Frogs became cool, nature became fun, and they wanted to learn more. So why is getting kids outdoors going to change the world? Because they will learn from a young age that the great outdoors is amazing. They’ll grow up with it, care about it, and when they’re adults, want to take care of it. When we treat the planet better, society benefits. We are and will always be dependent on the planet for every basic necessity of life. The sooner we teach kids to love nature and take care of the planet, the better off we will all be.