By Julia Dance 10th September 2021

There are five key ways to connect with nature: Contact, Emotion, Beauty, Meaning, Compassion.

Part 1: Contact – use your senses

Go outside and see what you can experience with your different senses. Here are some activities you can try, or can you think of any other ways to get all of your senses involved?

Listening to trees – stand near or under a tree and listen to how it sounds. Then try a different kind of tree – what does that sound like and how do the trees sound different from each other?

Slow walking – walk a few paces really slowly and notice how the ground feels under foot, especially when you move to different types of surface like grass, stone or woodchip. What’s your favourite?

Ground underfoot

360 degree look around – look up, look down, turn slowly around – how many colours or different plants or animals do you see within 360 degrees of yourself? Move to another spot and try it again, maybe sit down or crouch. What did you see that was striking or unexpected?

Humans are part of the natural world and connecting with it matters – for our own wellbeing, our understanding and to inspire us to protect nature. Use one of the five key ways to get closer to nature today!

We are delighted to share these tips as part of the Generation Green project, using work from the Nature Connectedness Research Group at University of Derby.