Have I mentioned that Berlin is the "greenest" city in the world? By this I mean it has more trees and foliage per capita than any other city. There is even a law that each citizen has a right to a tree within a few meters of their home. The aptly named Grunewald ("Green Forest") is one of the best spots in Berlin. It is a protected forest within city limits complete with ponds, lakes, a sand pit and wild pigs. When my children need a break from city life, the Grunewald is just a 30 minute train ride away.
|In the S-Bahn station Grunewald|
|Daddy and son beginning our trek. We've had an Indian Summer, so everything still looks very green.|
|Making friends with a beetle.|
|New finds for our nature table.|
|The first signs of fall.|
|Other-worldy looking mushrooms . . .|
|. . .perfect for a dolly world.|
|Game: who can hit the tree with the pine cones?|
|There's nothing like sinking your feet in a muddy pond and searching for frogs.|
|The Kiesgrube (Sandpit) is one of the most fun spots in the forest.|
|And light saber battles are also way more fun outdoors!|
I always notice an immediate change in my kids when we visit the forest or some natural setting. They are more relaxed and their concentration levels increase.
Just a reminder of some of the benefits when children spend time in nature:
- Calming effect that also helps with behavioral problems
- Enhances cognitive abilities
- Children are more physically active and less prone to weight issues
- Nurtures self-discipline.
- Nurtures healthy curiosity and problem solving
- Sounder sleep patterns
(For more articles on how nature positively effects children, see the links in this post.)
I wish you a great start in the week!