For as long as I can remember and before I had a name for it, some version of sit spot was a part of my life. At times I lived in cities where my sit spot was at my doorstep, watching grackles nest in my buildings’ gutters. I once lived on a farm with a pond, where I’d see beavers swim in circles and smack their tails on the water each morning. Since having my toddler I barely sit at all, but the things I have practiced at sit spot stay with me as I go about life. Whenever I can (and now more than ever), I stop and listen for birds, notice buds opening, and see how much I can take in with my senses. Paying close attention to the natural world, wherever I am, gets me out of my head and connects me to something bigger than my own life.
I hope you enjoy trying sit spot with your family. Although we describe it here as a solo activity, it can certainly be adapted and done with a small child on your lap, or even touched on in a passing moment when something sensory piques your child’s interest.sitspotfinalEnglish
Mai grew up in southwestern CT, where she spent her days clamoring across barnacled boulders lining Long Island Sound, and capturing crickets to feed to her leopard frogs. She studied acting at Emerson College and graduated from Hampshire College with a self-designed B.A. in ecosystem mimicry agriculture and community circus theater. Alisha Mai has run nature-immersion programming since 2008, with Vermont Wilderness School, the Institute for Natural Learning, Wolftree Programs, White Pine Programs, and most recently, Wild Earth. Mai enjoys working with girls and teens, and incorporating physical play into her programs. She draws upon her background in theater and circus to create zany and magical experiences in nature. Alisha Mai is certified in Wildlife Track and Sign (Level II) through CyberTracker, and is a Wilderness First Responder. She teaches vinyasa yoga and aerial silks, and studies at Circus Warehouse in Queens. More about Alisha Mai's work.