When children are outdoors and are visited by an animal, such as the miniature horse like Blaze (Clay’s pet) who visited Little Lea Montessori Preschool or when children enter an animal’s space (nature) they just come alive. It’s as if they’ve been invited into a special world. Bringing a child to a wild place, a wooded park or even just a schoolyard, where there are opportunities to encourage wildlife sightings (such as a humming bird by the window, dogs in the backyard, bugs chirping in the tree, worms in the vegetable garden, turtles in the aquarium at home) or other kinds of connections, can help children develop that innate love for animals. Current research reveals that children who are supported in their love for animals tend to extend such love to other living things, such as plants and nature. Research also shows that when children are encouraged to care for animals, they tend to be more sensitive and caring toward other people. As a learning community, we highly encourage you to expose children to animals of all kinds to awaken a deep sense of connection and empathy. Such bond forged early will serve them for a lifetime of relationships.
Thank you James and Ash Barnes for making this a memorable experience for Little Lea family.