By Erica Jurgensen
It’s always alarming when we hear about kids never getting the experience of exploring nature. Too often these kids grow up in a world where they are either afraid to explore or are too involved in technology to notice the beautiful world we live in. That’s why I always enjoy teaching at The Outdoor Campus; I get to see these kids being excited to learn about the world so many people their age ignore.
One particular class that I enjoy teaching is our Wet ‘n’ Wild class. In this class the kids get to learn all about different organisms that live in our creeks. They do this by looking at different samples that we have in test tubes and learn how to identify them. It is so much fun watching the kids act like scientists! After we practice identifying samples we put on our boots, grab our nets and walk down to the oxbow. This is where the real excitement begins.
The kids get to scoop their nets into the water and examine the creatures that they find. I can’t help but smile as I watch the kids work as a group to identify the creature. It’s even more fun to watch a child that is “afraid” of bugs pick one up to take a closer look. Almost every time I teach this class, and no matter how many times I warn them, somebody always seems to get stuck in the mud and fall into the water. It makes for a fun, messy time. Even the kids that claim they are afraid to touch bugs or get dirty come out laughing.
That’s why I love teaching this class; we never know what we might find, but the kids still have fun learning no matter what!