Bushwalking with your kids
NATURE teaches us how the world works. Imagination teaches us how to dream. Play teaches us how to make our dreams become real.
With each step down the path, the colours get richer as the light becomes more and more filtered by the green canopy of banksia and eucalyptus trees. Under your feet leaves from the season past crush and crackle and just for a moment gravity feels different.
Here are six ways to have fun and learn while enjoying bushwalking with your child:
1. Scavenger hunt
Write a list of things to find or for non-readers you can make a picture list of objects for them to cross off as you walk. This list can be based on colours, certain objects or a certain number of objects, it just depends on where you are walking.
2. Take pictures
Give your children a camera, they enjoy taking pictures. When you get home, take those pictures and make them into a simple book.
3. Nature rubbings
A fun way to talk about nature is to do some crayon rubbings on things that are outside. A tree trunk, the footpath, a leaf, the drain can all be great ways to talk about the textures in the world around us.
4. Go on a bug hunt
Take a magnifying glass and look at ants, spiders, beetles or any other bugs you see. This is a great segway into lots of other conversations, like the difference between bugs and spiders. If you are really brave you can bring along a container and collect some of these bugs so you can examine them closer when you get home.
5. Leaf impressions
Bring a bag and collect different types of leaves. When you get home make a batch of salt dough to press your leaves into so that you are left with the leaf impression. Once the salt dough dries, you can paint your leaves and have a nature-inspired piece of art.
6. Obstacle course
Jump over those cracks in the footpath.
Run a circle around the bench. Touch that tree. Run fast, stop!
Turn a simple walk into a listening and tiring activity.
- Nature Explorers is nature-based playgroup aimed to connect children and families in and with nature. Our playgroups are for children 0-3 years and held in various outdoor settings in Pottsville and Kingscliff. Email Nature Explorers co-ordinator Sofia Machado at email@example.com