Childhood Memories

If I asked you about your favourite childhood memories and most memorable play experiences, what would they be?

I am so fortunate to have had many wonderful childhood memories.  I grew up in North Vancouver near the foot of Grouse Mountain where the forest began just outside our backyard and extended up to the top of the mountain.  I spent many happy days playing in the woods with the children in the neighbourhood.  I didn’t know it then but I was a very lucky child to have the forest as my playground.

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nature trail

One of my vivid memories involves a time when we were walking along the trail and came upon a fallen tree.  The tree had fallen in just the right spot to create a natural seesaw and we were in heaven.  Somehow, nature’s seesaw is so much better than a brightly coloured playground see saw that is man made.  We had a fabulous time playing on that fallen tree and didn’t come home until we were called for dinner.

Fast forward to today and my preschool class with our most recent trip to the beach.  The children had the idea of carrying pieces of driftwood around and arranging them into a design.  There was one really long piece that required four children and Teacher Cindy to carry.  It was heavy but we were able to move it around.  And then a magical thing happened.

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We put the driftwood down on top of another piece of driftwood and voila!  It quickly became evident that we had a natural beach “sea-saw”  made of driftwood.  D and J sat down right away to give it a try and pretty soon they realized that 5 or 6 children could all ride the see saw at once.  Such cooperation!  It was great to see many children together enjoying the same experience.  It was like the see saw brought them together.  Yes, it totally took me back to my own childhood!

It is times like this as a preschool teacher that I know I have found my calling.  I am living and breathing my passion every day.  These are the moments when I feel I am good at what I do.  I am making a difference in the lives of children by taking them outdoors and giving them time to play.  I know I am appreciated by their parents who give a lot of time and energy towards the preschool. And though the work I do is not high paying, it is fulfilling and that is what makes it easy to get up and go each and every day.  This makes me feel so incredibly grateful.

I know the children were sad to leave.  The loose parts of the beach present so many possibilities.  I could empathize and didn’t want to tear them away but I knew we would be back for more beach adventures. You can’t beat nature’s playground!

What are your fondest memories from childhood?

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13 thoughts on “Childhood Memories

  1. Adore this post! Nothing compared to the joy that comes when you do the things that you are passionate about.
    Childhood memories…hmm I remember running over the ricefields that is newly-plowed,me & my cousins would race to tumbled down the ground to flatten the hurdles of hard soils…it was so fun! and playing in the rain while making paper boats.
    I am doing everything just for my little daughter have the same wild childhood free play memories…those are the best.No ipads & videos but it was just pure fun .
    I enjoyed reading this post!👍🏻

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    1. Thank you so much. I’m glad you liked this post! Playing in the rain, running over rice fields, making paper boats… it sounds like you were blessed with a wonderful childhood as well.

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  2. Thanks for sharing the memories of your childhood, Cindy and these lovely thoughts about play. I love the driftwood seesaw that many children could go on at the same time. It reminds me of seesaws from my childhood: long wooden beams that would take up to 5 or 6 children at each end. They seemed to get banned from playgrounds for being too dangerous after someone broke a leg. As if we could ban everything that someone is injured by! Accidents happen.
    I grew up near the beach and remember long days playing on the cliffs, in the sand and water, and climbing in the huge cotton trees that grew on the foreshore; long days that seemed without end as we didn’t have to be home until dark.

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  3. It is such a shame that those playground see saws are no longer an option. We could get much higher on those and going up and down was such fun! Sounds like you also had a lovely childhood. So lucky we were to have the opportunity to play all day with nature surrounding us.

    I recently read something about growing evidence that giving children more free time after school and less homework actually improved their academic performance in the long run. Interesting.

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  4. I think my entire childhood was on my bike with my friends, exploring, roaming, making pretend, being creative and hoping it wasn’t ever going to be dinner time. Cindy, you would absolutely love the school our children go to…The Miquon School. Progressive education, outdoors, choice, empowerment and child led. It’s a dream come true and a gift. TY

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