Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Anxious children feel better with DIRT!

Yep, you read that right.
Studies in the UK and USA have shown that children and indeed adults too who garden or play in the soil experience positive mood changes. They become calmer! Certain microbes in soil, Microbacterium Vaccae,  actually stimulate the brain's production of Serotonin, the body's calming hormone.
Read more at Gardening Know How: Antidepressant Microbes In Soil: How Dirt Makes You Happy http://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/soil-fertilizers/antidepressant-microbes-soil.htm,
You can read more here, on the Australian Science website - soil and depression
No wonder I can't wait to get out into my garden some days!

For anxious kids, this can be a fabulous way to effect change, especially if they are prone to depression.

So, what do you do if you live in the city?
  1. Buy a big pot for your balcony and fill it with soil, not potting mix, from the local nursery/hardware store. 
  2. Plant something edible, like lettuce, bok choy, spring onion, or herbs such as rosemary, chives, dill, coriander and thyme.
  3. Plant something colourful - this lifts the mood to.
  4. Tend your mini-garden daily. read up on what sort of ph the plants like, watering and plant food, pruning etc.
  5. Don't use gloves! But wash your hands when you're finished of course.
  6.  If you don't have a balcony, a spot near the window will do.
  7. Pull out the weeds! Again, don't use gloves. Get right in there and get dirty.
  8. Instead of a sandpit, build a small soil play area and add some utensils such as bucket, spade, old plastic pots etc. The 'clam shell' shallow outdoor pool/sandpit would be perfect.



Kids are suffering 
I am deadly serious. And very angry.
People are causing children extreme distress by ranting about Donald Trump and 'predicting' the end of the end of the world.

At my daughter's school the principal had to make special announcements to each class about the US election of Donald Trump. Why? Because stupid, insensitive people, including parents and teachers, had voiced their private views about Trump in such a way that children were beginning to fear for their future. The same thing happened at cub scouts this week. A little girl, aged ten, was depressed and upset, because 'that evil man is president and he's going to blow up the world.' In the city another principal had to make announcements to quell the hysteria raging in her school.

Keep personal political views out of the classroom!
What are people thinking?
Kids today already have enough pressures. Through social media their innocence is being taken from them at an earlier age. They struggle with interpersonal skills because they spend too much time online. Anxiety as a syndrome is skyrocketing. And irresponsible people are making it worse.

Children do not need the pressure these intolerant idiots are causing by spreading their hatred. I offer no comment on the man. I don't even live in the USA. But I do know that he was elected democratically and that's what the majority of the people wanted. How things proceed from here we shall have to wait and see.

Teachers DO NOT have the right to push their own political agenda in their classroom. This is WRONG. I have been teaching for 27 years, so I know what I'm talking about.

Our job is teaching our children to understand the democratic process instead of undermining the very thing it strives to achieve - freedom of speech and the right to vote.