Nature Deficit Disorder
In a world of alphabet soup diagnosis, I’d like to introduce my own diagnosis into the mix, Nature Deficit Disorder (NDD). In a day and age that a technological device often serves as a babysitter, I see more kids suffer from a lack of time in nature, playing outside, and enjoying God’s amazing creation, suffering from a closed off world of technology.
The Atlantic magazine did a 25 year intergenerational study and found that the number of teens spending daily time together dropped 40 percent From 2000-2015. These devices that were designed to connect us have in fact done the exact opposite. Students stay indoors chatting in a fantasy world instead of going to a park and playing sports with friends, and interacting with real people. The way a student grows up today is in stark contrast to the previous generation.
As you evaluate your family time, I encourage you to set boundaries for electronics that are age appropriate, protecting of innocence, conducive for your family time, and encourage time outdoors. Our upper school students do not fully enjoyed our new policy of no phones at lunch, but I have greatly valued their time to interact and talk face to face with friends here at school.
At home and at school we need to guard our time for outdoor play and personal interaction. This weekend was a full moon, and it was an exciting time for the family to take out the telescope and view the moon, an activity we do not do often enough. As we gazed through the telescope, one of my children simply asked, did God create that? I can’t remember the last time an electronic device stimulated such a great question. So it is our goal here at school to prevent students from suffering from NDD. There is a world of wonder to explore both here at school and in our homes! Enjoy the adventure exploring God’s creation together and getting a complete cure from NDD!