Sunday, July 29, 2012

How do we make our kids feel one with the nature!?

Today when we go around Bangalore, we keep seeing only concrete jungle. Lot of trees have been cut to widen the roads, for the "Namma Metro" project, to build underpass and flyovers. Lakes have been disappearing one by one. And Bangalore has been growing vertically - thousands of apartments have come up in Bangalore and wherever we go, we see only concrete everywhere! When I see all this, I keep remembering my childhood days.
The place around our house was not cemented. So, we had so much soil all around. So, our favourite passtime was to grow plants, observe different plants, observe the insects, spiders, etc. Every evening, we used to water the plants. We had lot of plants in and around our house. So, we used to make paths for the water to flow - put water at one end and see it go and reach all the plants! It was so much fun and was bringing us very close to nature. When we were doing this, we used to see many new plants coming up in our compound - many of these were growing on their own. And also, we used to see many different insects and small birds coming to our garden! Books and gardening used to keep us busy all the time. Those were the days, when we didn't have television, we didn't have mobile phones (even a landline telephone was a luxury!), we didn't have shopping malls, we didn't have Internet, we couldn't afford video, we had lot of time - in fact, "Full 24 Hours" was ours.
I feel today's kids miss all that. They don't get to touch the soil much. They don't get to play with the plants and insects. So, it will be difficult for them to feel one with the nature. How do we change all this?


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Venkatesh Dodmane said...

Nicely narrated good article.

Thanks for publishing the write-up on nature which we are all – if not kids alone-missing slowly & steadily now.

As you rightly said, modern kids miss all these. I consider them bit unlucky or not lucky compare to us (because am not sure next to next gen might not enjoy what our kids are now and we have not enjoyed what our parents have! )

While reading your article, I remembered my childhood days.

Being lucky to be grown mid of nature- Malenadu (Shivamogga dist), I thoroughly enjoyed loads of natural things - local games, roaming around the forests eating the natural fruits & nuts, playing in the muddy fields , drinking the natural milk & water, climbing trees and feeding plants & animals, dancing with butterflies, off-course mixing with ‘Natural people’ there.
Many may not believe, we were without shorts (knickers) until we go to school (6yrs)!

We used to swim in the village lake water which modern kids won’t even touch saying it’s dirty.

I used to climb the many trees, once on a kiddy challenge I claimed a 100ft tall coconut tree and pluck a tender coconut, that was my 13th year!

We were walking to middle school and high schools for 2km up & 2km down without footwear on the rocky/muddy roads, of course rushing to lunch and back within 60 minutes again covering 4ms!

Our rainy seasons were really rainy days! Almost full of 4 months a year with sone male (Continuous slow rain fall).

I studied in Kannada medium until 10th and faced mammoth task when I joined the college understanding all subjects in British language. First year I failed in two subjects and 2nd year I was first in the class! But that ended my child/student hood and became a competitive person which I consider ‘lost a wonderful era behind’ because I started to become a man with artificial (city) mind.

When I visited Bengaluru for the first time at the age of 10 years, it was a strange moment when I saw the following incident.

On that day, 6-7 kids were playing Gully tennis ball Cricket.

A ball was driven by a batsman (one kid) and unfortunately hit hard a fieldsman (another kid). Then he started crying, went to his nearby home. His parents came out and started enquiring who had hit the ball. What next? All kids showed the batsman. They started to shout with loud voice and tried to slap that batsman. Then batsman started to cry and his parents came out, both parents started quarreling. Neighbors joined. There were clearly two parties by this time. To see the gathering, driving auto drivers and two wheelers came down by parking the vehicles haphazardly on the nearby roads. Traffic halted and then police came down!!

What a pity! It was completely amazing seen for me. What funny people these are…? This could never happen in village at that time, am not sure now though. That is why I called them natural people.

Thanking Narendra for triggering me to child hood days.

Venkatesh Dodmane said...
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