WOW-The Sense of Wonder

Posted on 01. Jun, 2018 by in WOW! Blog

 

“If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder. . .  he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement and mystery of the world we live in.”    

                                                                 – Rachel Carson, The Sense of Wonder

Most people are familiar with Rachel Carson as the author of Silent Spring, the groundbreaking book that talked about the very real dangers of pesticide and the threats to our natural world from its use. Her reference to a silent spring referred to the very real threat pesticides were posing to a variety of animals such a birds that eat insects.  Insects were the targets of pesticides but their use damaged the whole food chain. It’s interesting that originally Silent Spring was published as a series in “The New Yorker” but then later that year released as a book. Silent Spring should be required reading for all who are interested in nature and for all elected officials.   Few realize that Rachel Carson was a gifted writer and a scientist beyond her most famous book.  She was the author of several books about the sea and before resigning from government service she was the editor-in-chief of all publications for the US Fish and Wildlife Service.  She resigned from that work to devote herself full time to writing and she continues to be influential through those writings over 50 years after her death.

Rachel Carson wrote a magazine article called “Help your child to Wonder” which was later published as The Sense of Wonder and illustrated with photos after her death. Although she had no children of her own she recognized the importance of cultivating a sense of wonder in children. I like to think WOW is following her lead as we work to introduce children and families to the world of nature around us. I’m glad we can play a part in continuing the work of such an important thinker. If you want to know more about Rachel Carson here are some links to additional information.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/03/26/the-right-way-to-remember-rachel-carson

http://www.rachelcarson.org/Books.aspx

https://www.neh.gov/humanities/2018/spring/feature/environmental-prophet-rachel-carson-cultivated-culture-wonder

 

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