Green Sugar Press  is Growing Green Minds: inspiring children to play and to grow up understanding how nature works. Nature teaches us everything we need to know.

Vendor of the Month:
Get to know your food & where it comes from at the best grocery near downtown,
Green Grocer Chicago
At 1402 West Grand, and hosting weekly tastings.

Care about Green Schools?
Come to architecture firm OWP/P December 8th from 6:00-8:30 in downtown Chicago for a cocktail party fundraiser for The Academy for Global Citizenship. Learn more here

P.S. I'm a school board member.

The Chicago Botanic Garden offers workshops to help incorporate more nature nearby in school curriculum.

Author Jane Kirkland created a top-notch resource to enable you to use your schoolyard as a teacher resource. Find
No Student Left Indoors here

Free museum days at Chicago's best cultural institutions listed here on the Explore Chicago website.

Hello Post Turkey Grazers,
Take a deep breath.  While Thanksgiving may be behind us, holiday parties and shopping pressures are upon us. Ready for something different? Something better?

If you have zero interest in cheap products imported from China and want your kids to have fun while you shop, consider The Chicago Waldorf School Annual Holiday Party, next Saturday, December 5th from 9:00-4:00 (1300 W. Loyola, Rogers Park). Shop for locally produced gifts while your kids engage in kid-friendly activities.

If you're considering pets this season, but want them to do more than fetch, invest in worms and put them to work eating your trash. Learn more at The Urban Worms Girls "Wine and Worms" party: From 1:00-5:00, December 6th  at their beautiful studio at 1962 N. Bissell in Lincoln Park.

Gobble, Gobble,

*Radio Action: This Sunday, catch me on Mike Nowak's show on WCPT at 8:00AM. If you miss it, the podcast will be here
If you slept through my interview on WGN last Sunday, I don't blame you. I went on at 6:30AM! The clip will be on the Green Sugar Press site soon.....

Dirty Work= Healthy Kids
Children may not be drawn to dirt just to aggravate their parents, researchers report in the latest edition of Nature Medicine, arguing that letting kids get their hands dirty is actually good for them. That's because soil restocks their skin with bacteria that help keep overactive immune responses under control, preventing minor cuts and scratches from swelling up and becoming inflamed. The findings also may provide an explanation for the "hygiene hypothesis," a theory that suggests childhood exposure to germs prepares the body against allergies later in life - and that a societal obsession with cleanliness is to blame for the rise in allergies and inflammatory diseases in the developed world. (Source: BBC News)

Recess & Outdoor Learning
Kids are wired to learn through outdoor play and hands-on activities. It's been that way for 250,000 years and isn't going to change overnight.

Six-year old children can't comprehend melting glaciers while sitting in desks any better than I understand brain surgery. Rather than teach abstract early, learning starts local, and hands-on.
To that end, check out the Healthy School Campaigns article on
recess and The Chiildren and Nature article on outdoor, hands-on learning.

Books make thoughtful holiday gifts.
Purchase books  here through Amazon or ask your children to make their own books to give as gifts.
       Earl           handmade nature book

In the words of Einstein: Nature teaches us everything we need to know.