An intuitive and inspiring study of childhood and the joy and wonder to be found in neighbourhood nature, from one of our finest nature writers.
From climbing trees and making dens, to building sandcastles and pond-dipping, many of the activities we associate with a happy childhood take place outdoors. And yet, the reality for many contemporary children is very different. The studies tell us that we are raising a generation who are so alienated from nature that they can't identify the commonest birds or plants, they don't know where their food comes from, they are shuttled between home, school and the shops and spend very little time in green spaces - let alone roaming free.
In this timely and personal book, celebrated nature writer Patrick Barkham draws on his own experience as a parent and a forest school volunteer to explore the relationship between children and nature. Unfolding over the course of a year of snowsuits, muddy wellies, and sunhats, Wild Child is both an intimate story of children finding their place in natural world, and a celebration of the delight we can all find in even modest patches of green.
Patrick Barkham was born in 1975 in Norfolk and was educated at Cambridge University. He is a features writer for the Guardian, where he has reported on everything from the Iraq War to climate change. He is the author of The Butterfly Isles: A Summer in Search of Our Emperors and Admirals, Badgerlands: The Twilight World of Britain's Most Enigmatic Animal, Coastlines: The Story of Our Shore and Islander: A Journey Around Our Archipelago. He lives in Norfolk with his wife and three children.