Wednesday, September 16, 2015


There are a number of advantages in letting kids play in the dirt.  It exposes kids to different textures.  It provides an opportunity for kids to use their imaginations, to create roads, move dirt, build bridges, create little river-ways and other things.  It also gives kids the opportunity to learn about growing things - how to plant, how to tend and protect plants and how to enjoy the flowers and veggies they grow.

Another great advantage of playing in dirt is the natural immunity it creates.  I find the huge push to eradicate 99.9% of germs by companies pushing disinfectants absolutely ridiculous.  They are so intent on selling their product that they advocate the 'necessary' disinfection of all surfaces, including hands, at every opportunity.  How do you think our bodies build up immunity against germs if we are not naturally exposed to them?

There is something therapeutic about putting your hands or feet in the soil; to be in touch with the very thing that creates growth.  It is a 'grounding' experience.  You may recall the reaction of babies when they place their bare feet on the grass, in sand or in the dirt.  It is an unusual sensation  because most of the time their feet are covered.  It really is a point of discovery, of awareness as to how different objects and surfaces feel.

We were walking along the shoreline in New Zealand one day and saw a little girl in a pretty pink top and pants playing in a mud puddle.  It wasn't long before her clothes were covered in mud, but she was unaware of any of that.  She was having a great time.  Her parents didn't go and pull her away, they just let her experience the moment.  Good for them.

Written by Sally Burgess, Forefront Families.


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