Last Child in the Woods

Last Child in the Woods

Saving Our Children From Nature-deficit Disorder

Book - 2008
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"The children and nature movement is fueled by this fundamental idea: the child in nature is an endangered species, and the health of children and the health of the Earth are inseparable." --Richard Louv, from the new edition

In his landmark work Last Child in the Woods, Richard Louv brought together cutting-edge studies that pointed to direct exposure to nature as essential for a child's healthy physical and emotional development. Now this new edition updates the growing body of evidence linking the lack of nature in children's lives and the rise in obesity, attention disorders, and depression. Louv's message has galvanized an international back-to-nature campaign to "Leave No Child Inside." His book will change the way you think about our future and the future of our children.

"[The] national movement to 'leave no child inside' . . . has been the focus of Capitol Hill hearings, state legislative action, grass-roots projects, a U.S. Forest Service initiative to get more children into the woods and a national effort to promote a 'green hour' in each day. . . . The increased activism has been partly inspired by a best-selling book, Last Child in the Woods, and its author, Richard Louv." -- The Washington Post

" Last Child in the Woods, which describes a generation so plugged into electronic diversions that it has lost its connection to the natural world, is helping drive a movement quickly flourishing across the nation." -- The Nation's Health

"This book is an absolute must-read for parents." -- The Boston Globe
Now includes
A Field Guide with 100 Practical Actions We Can Take 
Discussion Points for Book Groups, Classrooms, and Communities 
Additional Notes by the Author 
New and Updated Research from the U.S. and Abroad
Publisher: Chapel Hill, N.C. : Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 2008
Edition: Updated and expanded. --
ISBN: 9781565126053
Branch Call Number: P 155.418 Lou 3465
Characteristics: xii, 390 p


From Library Staff

SPL_Shauna Nov 07, 2017

If you're a nature lover who's hoping to impart the same love in your children, this book is essential. In the first half of the book, Louv's research details the many ways exposure to nature helps kids' physical, mental and emotional development. The second half of the book focuses on how to put... Read More »

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SPL_Shauna Nov 07, 2017

If you're a nature lover who's hoping to impart the same love in your children, this book is essential. In the first half of the book, Louv's research details the many ways exposure to nature helps kids' physical, mental and emotional development. The second half of the book focuses on how to put the research into action to benefit your family.

Louv's writing is compelling and impassioned, a call to the outward bound. Enough of the research is applicable to all ages that this book is a good companion read for those who read The Nature Fix, and are hungry for more information. This book is a treasure, and highly recommended.

Dec 16, 2016

This is a must read book. It's not just for parents about children; it's for all of us and our need to be outdoors in nature in order to be a well-balanced, whole individual.

Dec 18, 2015

Great book, I've read it from cover to cover in a matter of days, so interesting. Very well reaserched, it tells many interesting facts. I am a nature lover myself, and try to teach my children to treat it with respect to - I found quite a few great ideas to use in parenting. It is not a how-to manual, but
I took the information relevant to me from this book and read a lot of eye opening facts.highly recommended for parents.

Apr 07, 2015

While not (yet) an official diagnosis, the premise that people, particularly today's children, are suffering from a lack of contact with nature is compelling and inspiring. Contains good arguments to get one making some lifestyle changes

andreas1111 Mar 11, 2014

Great premise to this book. Basically the author contends that due to a number factors such as parental and societal paranoia and the lure of electronic media kids don't get enough time in nature, and that lack of nature has a lot of negative impacts.

I agree 100%, but I still found the book a bit of a tedious read. Seems like the book could easily have been half the length.

Also didn't focus enough on role of parents. if parents are obsessed with electronics and at best ambivalent about spending time outside then how do we expect kids to connect with nature??

Feb 16, 2014

Fascinating and widely researched.

drchestnut Feb 01, 2014

This book was recommended for the library by the artist Robert Bateman who told me in an email that "nature is transforming". He also says research has shown that many issues facing our young people today can be improved by being exposed to nature.
Nature teaches us many life lessons and if we are quiet and listen many wonders.

Aug 20, 2013

I would recommend this book to anyone with children and it is a wonderful resource for anyone that works with children and youth as well. Louv speaks about today's young people and how they are growing up in America's third frontier, which includes: the detachment from the sources of food, the virtual disappearance of the farm family, the suburbs and their ever shrinking open space, the ambivalent new relationship between humans and other animals, and a generation that is so "plugged-in" that it has lost the connection with our natural world...but he provides hope for the future and talks about the change that is already in full force. He provides beautiful quotes throughout his chapters. I gotta say, after reading his book, I was truly inspired.

Nov 02, 2010

A terrific book--recommended for all parents. "Nature-deficit disorder" might be a bit of hyperbole, but even for nature-loving parents, this book is an eye-opener with a lot of good evidence of why kids really need and benefit from unstructured outside time in natural environments and that nature needs to be infused into children's daily lives and not just fun vacations.


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Jun 09, 2014

We have such a brief opportunity to pass on to our children our love for this Earth, and to tell our stories. These are the moments when the world is made whole. In my children's memories, the adventures we've had together in nature will always exist.

Jun 09, 2014

An environment-based education movement--at all levels of education--will help students realize that school isn't supposed to be a polite form of incarceration, but a portal to the wider world.


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Jun 09, 2014

In this influential work about the staggering divide between children and the outdoors, child advocacy expert Richard Louv directly links the lack of nature in the lives of today's wired generation—he calls it nature-deficit—to some of the most disturbing childhood trends, such as the rises in obesity, attention disorders, and depression.

Last Child in the Woods is the first book to bring together a new and growing body of research indicating that direct exposure to nature is essential for healthy childhood development and for the physical and emotional health of children and adults. More than just raising an alarm, Louv offers practical solutions and simple ways to heal the broken bond—and many are right in our own backyard.

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