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The Spiritual Life of Children

by Ruth A. Wilson
September/October 2010
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/the-spiritual-life-of-children/5019524/

Over the past 10 to 20 years, early childhood professionals have witnessed a number of initiatives and movements which have added a spark of energy and interest to the field. These initiatives and movements have been informed, in part, by new research in a number of areas including how the brain develops, the role of emotions in cognitive development, the need for multicultural perspectives, and the importance of strong connections with nature. Of these, the importance of connecting children with nature is, perhaps, the one area receiving the most attention at the present time.

In 2006, participants at the Working Forum on Nature Education for Young Children generated a list of 15 advan-tages of connecting children with nature. These advantages include the development of the whole child with specific mention of the cognitive, social, and emotional domains. Other benefits include 1) the development of caring, pro-social behavior; 2) the preserving of culture, community, learning, healthy being, and world habitat; and 3) the promotion of peace (Exchange, 2006). While this list is impressive and may sound comprehensive, one area of child development not specifically mentioned is spirituality. A look at other initiatives and materials for early childhood education reflects this same ...

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