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Environmental Education

Environmental Activities

Little Ways & Big Ways
of Engaging with Nature

James Neill
Last updated:
08 Oct 2004

Little Ways & Big Ways of Engaging with Nature


From little things, big things grow
- Paul Kelly

Little ways

Find little ways to learn about nature, explore them regularly, then gradually introduce more involved activities.  Little ways can gradually become profound, for example:

  • find a special spot in nature, near your house, and visit it each day
  • care for the place little by little, taking actions to facilitate the natural ecosystem
  • gradually remove barriers between your life and nature (e.g., open the windows more often, spend more time outside, use less electricity)
  • eat more fresh food
  • grow your own vegetables
  • calculate your personal ecological footprint - if the average American consumes 1 million pounds of materials per year (Hawken, et al, 1999), how much do you consume?

As your sensitivity to nature develops, explore more indepth interactions, e.g.,:

  • nature meditations and visualizations
  • creating an organic or permaculture garden system
  • spend time with an indigenous or environmental "elder"
  • create your own vision quest or solo
  • get off the grid and switch to solar power
  • build your own simple dwelling from recycled materials