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5 pathways to nature connection

Updated: May 24, 2022

Why use nature as a context for learning? Contact with nature is essential for improving emotional, physical and spiritual health and wellbeing.

Learn about the 5 pathways to nature connection from the "International pathways to nature connection research"

  • Senses: engaging with nature through the senses eg, listening to birdsong, smelling flowers, watching the sunset.

  • Beauty: being inspired by the beauty of nature, often through music, poems or art.

  • Meaning: using nature or natural symbolism (eg, language and metaphors) to represent an idea, thinking about the meaning of nature and signs of nature, eg, the first daffodil of spring.

  • Emotion: an emotional bond/love for nature eg, reflecting on the happiness brought by nature.

  • Compassion: taking action! Caring for nature and doing something to protect it.

The pathways have been found to improve wellbeing and to grow a positive attitude towards caring for nature.

See the Department of Conservation "Photo story of Nature" activity card flyer.

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