The beauty of the environment around us can do a lot to alleviate stress, and this is true of both children and adults. So says an article on the University of Minnesota website: "Research reveals that environments can increase or reduce our stress, which in turn impacts our bodies. What you are seeing, hearing, experiencing at any moment is changing not only your mood, but how your nervous, endocrine, and immune systems are working.
The stress of an unpleasant environment can cause you to feel anxious, or sad, or helpless. This in turn elevates your blood pressure, heart rate, and muscle tension and suppresses your immune system. A pleasing environment reverses that. And regardless of age or culture, humans find nature pleasing."
Ruth Wilson, in an article that forms the basis for an Out of the Box Training Kit, "Beauty in the Lives of Young Children," writes:
"Beauty, it has been said, is one of the most profound and essential forces in our lives (Gardner, 2011; Gendler, 2007). Many of us know that beauty can bring joy, inspire awe and promote a sense of well-being. Some of us also know beauty as an expression and deepening of the spiritual aspects of our lives."
In their truly beautiful book, Bringing the Outside In, Sandra Duncan and Jody Martin quote Laura Bethmann as saying "If we pay attention, nature has the profound power to awaken the place of beauty within us. We have the capability to recognize the beauty and mystery of nature because that beauty and mystery are at the heart of our being. It is in all the life around us – it is us."
for buy one, get one FREE Out of the Box Kits
The Out of the Box Training Kit, Teaching with Respect, helps teachers understand why respect is important in the interactions we have with all human beings, including young children who spend much of the day in our classrooms. By reading this article and engaging in the experiences, teachers will understand what it means to teach with respect. Teachers will understand why an environment designed around respect is important in the classroom. They will develop concrete ways to express respect in their everyday interactions with children.
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