Apr 112014
 

A new study indicates that children who view a simulated forest environment whilst exercising are more likely to experience health enhancing effects after the activity.  A UK university study of children aged 9-10 years, published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health Health, found that after a series of 15 minute moderate intensity cycling activities the children’s post-activity blood pressure was significantly lower than it was without the simulated forest environment, indicating that the nature scenes promoted positive health effects.

Walking can increase life expectancy

Dr Michael Duncan, lead author of the study and associate head of the Department of Applied Sciences and Health at Coventry University, said:

“If there is indeed a correlation between viewing scenes of nature and a lower blood pressure post exercise, as indicated by our data, it could have very positive implications in encouraging public health practitioners to prescribe outdoor exercise to reduce health risk.”

More information:  http://blogs.coventry.ac.uk/researchblog/health-benefits-green-exercise-kids-shown-new-study/

Feb 112014
 

A practical workshop about how to raise children who are creative, imaginative and empowered to find their own freedom, potential and purpose in life.Eco Inspired Logo - education, health and wellbeing

JOIN US at the Mullumbimby Community Gardens – starting 25th February 9.30am – 11.30am

In the workshop you will learn about

  • Creating Sacred Spaces – How to create healthy environments for you and your family
  • Power of Art – Fun Arts and Craft Activities for Young Children using natural materials
  • Mind-Body Nutrition – practical simple ideas for your and family meals
  • Transform your Mind – simple strategies to support positive change in you and your family’s life

Course Includes :

  • Natural toy and craft making for children
  • Bread making – create your own delicious organic wholemeal bread
  • Songs and games for early childhood

“Jane has a fascinating story and shares that she has been teaching her Steiner based understanding of the deeper stories and rhythms of early childhood out in more remote Indigenous communities. She is very into the deep nourishing and unfolding of this magical ‘Kingdom’ of early childhood, and uses the practical exercises of these eco parenting workshops to help share ways  for parents to support and  enrich this early childhood experience.
The course is for adult learning, so wont have a child focus as such, but bubs toddlers and children are welcome.”
Inica Star, January 2014

Tuesday x 4 sessions     $100 + $10 materials           MCG members $95 + $10 materials      Mullumbimby Community Gardens, Stuart St, Mullumbimby,  Northern NSW,  2482

Workshop presenter: Jane Hanckel is an early childhood advocate and author of ‘Eco Parenting Growing Greener Children’ an evidence based book on how to raise healthy, happy children. Jane’s work is informed by a Steiner approach to early childhood.

For more information contact: info@ecoparenting.net

Jun 062013
 

The BBC’s short clip on the Power of Art transforming education is a wonderful testament to the importance of art and music in schools.

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Play video from the BBC’s website

“Over the last several years the focus of US education has been fixed firmly on the sciences. But research shows that the arts help children do better in all subjects and improve the likelihood that they will stay in school longer.

The Obama administration is putting this theory to the test by investing $2m (£1.3m) for arts education in eight of the most poorly performing schools across the country.

At Orchard Gardens Pilot School in Boston, the results have been dramatic. In just three years the students at the once-troubled school have improved their basic academic skills and many say the arts have changed their lives.

Jane O’Brien looks at the impact of art in education in the sixth and final instalment of the Power of Art series.”

May 142013
 

Face to face empathic communication is essential for our health.  Barbara Fredrickson, Professor of Psychology at the University of North Carolina, writes in the New York Times about the cost of instant electronic media on our well being.  Technology has assisted us in communicating more rapidly – the question is how do we balance our increasing reliance on technology with time for meaningful, loving kindness interactions.

Soon to be released ‘Spontaneous Acts of Love’, Meditations and Reflections for Parents, by Jane Hanckel, part of the Eco Parenting Series, provides an invaluable resource for contemplative connected parenting.

“All around you are the keys to knowing – in nature, in the arts and crafts of the generations before us. Be open to the beauty that surrounds you. In that beauty the wonder and mystery of the Earth are revealed.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/24/opinion/sunday/your-phone-vs-your-heart.html?_r=0

 

 

Mar 282013
 

Boy with Autism Recovers After Gluten-free Casein-free Diet

Many parents know that diet and environment can change children’s behaviour. In this video a mother and Dr Kenneth Bock discuss how a gluten and dairy free diet helped her son recover from autism.

Dr Bock recommends also that children and families avoid chemicals, pesticides and other possible contributors to autism such as phthalates in plastic.

‘Growing Greener Children’ is a great first step comprehensive resource for parents wanting to adopt a healthier lifestyle.

 

 

Mar 262013
 

If you change the beginning of the story you change the whole story is the message from Dr Dimitri Christakis talking on TEDx about media and children.

Typically the age children in 1970’s started watched television regularly was 4 years, now it’s 4 months. The typical child under child of 5 years is watching 4-5 hours a day.

Dimitri’s talk clearly outlines the effects of too much television on the child’s developing brain.

Mar 102013
 

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has released a new report co-produced with the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), titled: State of the Science of Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals (EDC’s).

Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals, EDC’s, include Bisphenol-A (BPA), PCB’s, phthalates and agricultural pesticides that are in everyday items such as plastic water bottles, shower curtains, beauty products (including nail polish, hair spray, shampoo, deodorants, and fragrances), vinyl floor coverings, and more. The joint study highlights a range of health problems associated with EDC’s including breast cancer in women; developmental effects on the nervous system in children and attention deficit hyperactivity in children.

Theo Colborn, Ph.D., President of the Endocrine Disruption Exchange talks about chemicals, parents and dreams of the future for our children.

Theo asks ‘Where are parents going to get information to help understand the myriad of factors in the environment and the effect on their children’. ‘Growing Greener Children’ is such a resource for parents.

Further information : Common Household Chemicals Linked to Human Disease in Landmark UN Study’ Dr Mercola’s website

 

 

 

 

 

Feb 072013
 

In Australia the Green Party have created a new poll to understand parents perspectives on early childhood education and care.  The Green Party has said it’s time to hear what parents thought about childcare.

Share your views about childcare.

The online survey is at www.childcarepoll.com.

Jan 302013
 

The film,  ‘Play Again’  highlights the importance of play and nature and asks the question ‘What are the consequences of a childhood removed from nature?’.

The film’s synopsis : –

‘One generation from now most people in the U.S. will have spent more time in the virtual world than in nature. New media technologies have improved our lives in countless ways. Information now appears with a click. Overseas friends are part of our daily lives. And even grandma loves Wii.

But what are we missing when we are behind screens? And how will this impact our children, our society, and eventually, our planet? At a time when children play more behind screens than outside, PLAY AGAIN explores the changing balance between the virtual and natural worlds. Is our connection to nature disappearing down the digital rabbit hole?

This moving and humorous documentary follows six teenagers who, like the “average American child,” spend five to fifteen hours a day behind screens. PLAY AGAIN unplugs these teens and takes them on their first wilderness adventure – no electricity, no cell phone coverage, no virtual reality.

Through the voices of children and leading experts including journalist Richard Louv, sociologist Juliet Schor, environmental writer Bill McKibben, educators Diane Levin and Nancy Carlsson-Paige, neuroscientist Gary Small, parks advocate Charles Jordan, and geneticist David Suzuki, PLAY AGAIN investigates the consequences of a childhood removed from nature and encourages action for a sustainable future.’

From more information www.playagain.com