How to raise children the natural way

Some parents hear about natural living or have a vague idea that they should be ‘more natural’ in their homes, but aren’t sure how to do it. There is no need to switch over to a totally natural lifestyle in one go, in fact it will be much easier to make a few small changes at a time. Here are some tips:

Develop an interest in nature

Most children naturally love to be out in nature. Others may be more familiar with an environment with little exposure to nature and might not have an immediate interest in it. Either way, getting your kids out into nature can help raise a natural child. To do this, try some of the following.

– Encourage a collection of natural objects, such as pine cones, feathers, rocks, or nuts.

– Direct your kids outside when they are bored or getting underfoot in the house. This will help teach them where to turn – nature – when they need something to do.

– Take walks together as a family instead of going to the cinema, watching TV or playing computer games.

– Nature crafts can open your kids’ eyes to the creative possibilities around them. They can gather twigs to weave into picture frames and wreaths or collect acorns to decorate various objects. They can weave flowers into chains or build dens out of sticks. Check your local library and the internet to find more nature craft ideas.

Natural skincare

The skincare products that are widely available are filled with a cocktail of man-made chemicals. Understandably, many parents are worried of the impact of these chemicals on their children and the environment, so switch to natural skincare products for children instead.

Attachment Parenting

Many people consider attachment parenting to be the most natural form of parenting. This makes sense – carrying your baby on your body and feeding as needed is very much what animals do and what our ancestors were likely to have done. Attachment parenting largely shuns the use of artificial equipment like dummies, bottles, bouncy seats and even cots.

Attachment and natural parenting can begin before birth with a natural pregnancy followed by a natural birth.

Cloth nappies

Use cloth nappies for a more natural parenting approach and less of an impact on the environment.

Food

Natural food is certainly a way to connect your child to the natural world. Home-made baby food, toddler snacks, and meals can go a long way in growing an appreciation for food and nature. Consider growing a garden for at least some of your food, and let your child help with the gardening and harvesting. You could even get a few chickens, too! Your kids will know more than most about where food comes from.

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