What are waldkinder? The word is from the German ‘wald’ (wood) and ‘kinder’ (children). The ‘waldkindergarten’ (Forest kindergartens) of Germany, Sweden, Denmark, and more recently, U.S., are schools where young children spend their days, rain or shine, out of doors. They walk and explore local landscapes as a means of learning broader truths about how our world works.
In the small mountain town where I live, schooling options are limited. We are, in fact, rather short on most every type of institution. Our bank, medical clinic, and pharmacy all closed their doors last year. We do have a grocery store, pizza joint, hardware store, and meadery. But while we lack in institutional presence, we abound in opportunity for unmediated contact with woods, water, trees and sky. “Woods Children” our daughters will be, if we take the time to lead them into our wild, mountainous and expansive backyard. This humble blog is my attempt to share our explorations of this place we call home.