Do you feel like you’re a part of nature?

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My 7-year-old says that humans are part of nature because we drink the same water as animals and plants. We eat and drink and wee and poo like animals. We grow our food in nature (and sometimes animals and birds eat it too). And we evolved from a common ancestor – a very simple creature that lived millions of years ago.

So what is ‘nature’? How are humans a part of nature? And what can we do to look after our natural world?

Nature is all around us – it is all the living things on Earth and the places where they live. And humans are very much a part of nature (sometimes also called the ‘natural world’).

Human beings (including you and me) are animals. We do the things that all living things do to stay alive – like growing, sensing changes in our habitat (the place where we live) and reproducing (having babies).

Humans live in all sorts of different habitats around the world. Our habitats are described by the types of plants that grow there, what the weather is like and what the land there is like.

Humans have learned how to use the Earth’s natural resources in lots of new ways. For example, we grow and harvest foods that are good to eat. We use wood, stone and other materials to build places to live and work and learn and play. We use trees to make paper and pencils to write with. We use wood, oil and coal as fuels to keep ourselves warm. We have also learned how to train other animals to live and work with us.

But we should be careful about how we use the Earth’s natural resources. If we are not careful, we could change habitats so much that living things can’t live there any more.

Looking after our natural world or taking care of the environment is everybody’s responsibility. We can all do our bit to help by looking after plants and animals, not using more resources than we need, recycling instead of throwing things away, and using less energy in our cars and buildings.

If you want to know more, you might like to watch this video about how to take care of the Earth.

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