People these days have become so disconnected from nature. Our society has gotten so far away from gathering wild food. Foraging used to be a normal everyday occurrence, a way of life and a need for survival. Now it seems people are furthering themselves from this essential skill and losing touch with the natural world around them. Even agriculture is becoming far and distant for some. I for one, do not want my kids to grow up without this knowledge. I do not want this to become a forgotten skill.
|My girls, Zari & Teela, last year with Dandelions|
My hobby as a forager began when I was a child also. I learned about some edible and medicinal plants in Girl Scouts and later I picked up a book about edible flowers from our local library and devoured the contents. I don't really remember the title to the book but it had recipes too. I loved learning about how violets, dandelions, roses, and nasturtiums were all edible and what you could do with them besides add them to a salad. It was fun because the food involved something out of the ordinary for me.
Foraging is a wonderful survival skill, but it also teaches children (and adults) about all kinds of other needed skills as well. It teaches about: following directions, cooking and eating natural foods, where food really comes from, making discoveries, exploring, observation, collecting, and being in nature, etc. When you are teaching your child you can also dive into other things related that ties in with it like: science, health and nutrition, stories, folklore, history, poetry, games, and art.
This book, Foraging with Kids by "Wildman" Steve Brill, is a wonderful learning tool to teaching your children about plants that can be foraged for food. This book is perfect for the beginner of foraging with children or those that are beginners who want to teach children. It covers only those plants you can find just about anywhere with no poisonous look-alikes, especially edibles that kids tend to like a lot. It has a total of 76 wild edible species from the contiguous United States and Southern Canada. These plants are organized by season and plant type so you can easily identify the plant. It will take you through identifying characteristics, botany basics, where to (and not to) forage, how to forage without destroying the plant and wildlife surrounding it, a list of items to take with you foraging, and pictures of each plant to help you along the way get to know these plants well. Still a word of caution, you need to always verify a plant’s identity with 100% certainty before you eat it!
Foraging with Kids also has some wonderful tips, poetry, stories, folklore, history, games, activities, science, and recipes scattered throughout its pages. Each story, folktale, or blip about our history is surrounded by dashed and dotted lines and has a picture of a slightly open book with a dragon on the cover on the page so it is easily found. The science experiments and lessons are circled and have a funny anthropomorphic cucumber?? that is looking through a magnifying glass on the page. The recipes in this book are found with a drawing of a baby looking at a cookbook that says Cooking for Kids on the cover. They are all whole-food vegan (no animal products) recipes. Some have ingredients that you might not have available to you in your kitchen, but are easily found and bought at a health food store. These are all wonderful recipes without all the refined, processed junk and fillers.
|My girls, Teela & Zari, this year with Violets|
You can purchase Foraging with Kids by "Wildman" Steve Brill for $54.95 for the print version or $12.50 for the PDF downloadable version.
DISCLOSURE/DISCLAIMER: I received this product for free to facilitate my review. My thoughts are mine and my family's own opinion and have not been altered by anyone else. I did not receive any other compensation for doing this review.