We are used to saying that time can run slow or fast, well known is the phrase that says that the length of a minute depends on which part of the bathroom door you are! In fact, few consider the effects that time can have on relationships and learning.
Every time we check an email or hear the beep of a text message or the phone rings, whatever cognitive process our brain is processing, it suffers an interruption, it is kidnapped by an overload of work. It is as if in preparing for a sports match, instead of giving continuity to training, we systematically interrupt ourselves. Or while we are cooking, the microwave and the oven play continuously and we risk burning the puree. On the farm this risk is not run, the devices are not used to be together with the animals, nor to run on the meadows or jump on the sand. When you pick herbs and vegetables from the garden, you can only hold the basket in your hands, let alone while kneading the flour with the eggs or sitting down to discuss the events of the day. Time takes on all its value, it is not he who guides us but we decide what to do. Researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin conducted a study of 630 Berliners and found that those who lived near the parks had a healthier brain structure, firmer memory and more fluid reasoning. At Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health have instead shown the lowest mortality (-12%) of people who live in contact with nature. It is estimated that over 70% of the world’s population will live in cities and this could certainly be a new factor of natural selection. The psychology department of the University of British Columbia Okanagan directed by researcher Holli-Anne Passmore, has conducted a series of studies which showed that contact with nature is a factor that directly increases the well-being of people and now those who follow the our posts know very well that learning in a condition of well-being is much easier and more effective. This concept emerged in particular during the last working meeting of the Cultivators of the Future held on 30 November 2018 in Spoleto where scholars, teachers and educators agreed that leaving the classroom and creating a bridge with the surrounding reality, makes us introduce elements breaking the habitual pattern and bringing up new areas of attention that teachers can take advantage of to transmit notions through new experiential activities. Our brain processes ideas while it is free from work: it is while we swim or run or take a walk that it rearranges memories. The neuronal connections then look for the connections between the acquired data and stimulated by an image or a sound that we had never noticed before, but that by walking slowly or looking at reality instead of a screen, we are finally able to see, a new idea is born. . It was right there in the middle of everyone’s path but only those who were able to pass slowly could notice it. Time on a farm … it is not he who commands, it is not the schedule of things to do that dictates the rhythm of the day. It is the farm that commands. It is useless for the man to make too detailed plans, because you never know how long it will take to collect the honey or if our Gwendolyn will call you because her milk is too much and she wants to be milked, or if she realizes that the hens is breaking. Time on the farm is our friend, it awaits us and gives us the opportunity to stop, to wait, to observe, to dream. Above all, in the evening it gives us the opportunity to sit down and talk and tell each other about all the unexpected and stimulating experiences that have distracted us from the pre-established plan.