For most people, clouds are nothing but a visual muzak. Seen but seldom ‘looked at’, much like the canned music, that goes on playing without anyone really listening to it. But for cloud lovers like me, ‘cloud watching’ is considered as the magic show of the sky.
The other day on a long drive back home, my child exclaimed, “Mamma, who has outlined that cloud?” It took me sometime to explain to my 5 year old that no one has really outlined it, but the sun rays from behind the cloud is giving it the outlined effect. And after some time, my son concluded, “oh, the sun is playing hide and seek with us, the human beings”. (He recently learnt the term and the meaning of ‘human beings’ and is trying to apply it in his daily conversation- as much as possible.)
The younger one (2.5 years) followed suit and screamed ‘’Mamma, there’s a lion’’ She was pointing at the cloud, which was indeed in the shape of a lion! The side face of a lion, with jaws open- to be more specific.
My husband and I exchanged a look. We were quite impressed at the little one’s imagination power. With time, we have developed the habit of cloud watching together. Sometimes, we all come up with some hilarious comparisons and have a good laugh together.
True it’s an awesome family bonding activity, but there are some more reasons why I encourage cloud watching in my Kids.
Connect to the Nature
Clouds are enigmatic and that’s what attracts the kids to them the most. You can see them, fly through them, but never really get hold of them. Some clouds are dark while others are as white as cotton! So, the curiosity that these clouds evoke in the kids helps them in understanding the different elements of nature.
With cloud watching, the children automatically learn about the weather conditions and know how to predict the weather. This is a practical way of grasping the fact that the days can be sunny or cloudy .Also, they learn that too many clouds indicate the arrival of rains. This is a subtle way to introduce the concept of science and geography to pre-schoolers.
Cloud watching is indeed a great activity for honing the imaginative powers of children at a tender age. By looking at the different shaped clouds, the kids always come up with newer concepts based on their observation, perception and imagination. Since there’s no right or wrong associated, the children are more confident about expressing their individual views.
By encouraging cloud watching in your child, you will help her become more focussed with an increased attention span. Play a game with your children where in you ask them to relate the cloud that they see up in the sky with anything they know about- be it some animal or shape etc. This way the children learn to focus more towards finding suitable correlations, which results in their enhanced concentration power. You will be amazed to find the comparisons that the kids come up with!
Keep them Occupied
Often, if you are on a long a flight, a good way to keep your kids engaged for a while is by watching the clouds floating by. Or if you are on a road trip with kids, soothe your cranky tot, by showing her the different shapes of the clouds. This will distract the little one for some time. Also, if your child is just bored one morning or evening, go to the terrace and spend some time watching the clouds.
In today’s media-soaked environment, activities like cloud watching is a welcome change. In fact, many people grow up to pursue cloud watching as a serious hobby and they capture the different types and shapes of clouds in varying hues from the huge sky canvas.
So, next time you are outdoors (on a long drive, picnic, or from the aeroplane), just try cloud watching with your little ones, you will realise what a stress-free and fun-filled activity it turns out to be.