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Carbon Chamber: It’s time to let your children go wild

Published February 02. 2019 06:34AM

If you have kids your life can be pretty hectic.

Between school, homework and all the extracurricular activities out there parents and kids are constantly on the go rushing from one thing to the next.

Some families that I know are so overscheduled it’s hard to find time to even sit down together at the dinner table for a nutritious meal and share their day.

They grab something from the fast food joint while rushing from here to there and end up eating in the car.

Consequently, the only way they get to see a beautiful sunset is through the car window on the way to a game or some other activity.

We tend to overschedule our kids’ lives all in the name of giving them every opportunity to have experiences that maybe we never did.

I have to wonder if the kids of today would even know how to just go outside with a bat, ball and glove and play a game of baseball without having any adults dictate and “oversee” what they are doing.

Our younger kids and teenagers need some outdoor adventure in their lives.

Being able to disconnect from the digital world, the pressures of school and overscheduling and connecting with nature and enjoying the wilderness adventures that Carbon County has to offer will help them develop into well-rounded young adults.

Teach your children the importance of conservation and green space and how humans interact with the natural world around them.

To be more observant on what is going on around them and not through someone else’s vision on a screen.

Kids need the freedom to discover what life is like without a schedule. They need to learn how to handle failure and that in the real world you don’t get a participation trophy just for showing up. We found that involving our son at a young age with nature provided him with the calm and balance that he needed.

He has grown up living the majority of his life outdoors and now has a good job where he still uses all the outdoor and leadership skills he learned on his way to becoming an Eagle Scout.

Everyone needs time to kick back and relax, to lay in the grass and look at the clouds to see what shapes you can find.

To use your own creativity and imagination and not have an electronic device do it for you. Give your child the opportunity to be the “navigator” if you are on a road trip without the benefit of GPS. Our children should be able to find their way without leaning on technology to do it for them.

Teach your children to think outside of the box and be creative and innovative.

They need to learn how to take risks and not be afraid to fail.

These traits not only build character and independence, but they also help build the next generation of fearless entrepreneurs and business owners.

Connecting with nature is just the beginning.

Kathy Henderson is Director of Economic Development for the Carbon Chamber and Economic Development Corporation.

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