Nature Activities for Kids
You can find the world of nature in your backyard, on a city street, or in a mountain wilderness. But what kind of nature activities promote a child's love and understanding of the world of nature?
Good nature activities help children develop personal relationships with nature. Feeding birds, finding a place in nature that is special to them, or learning to recognize the tracks of the raccoon family that crosses the yard every night - these are the kinds of activities that forge a lifelong bond with the natural world.
Big Learning with Nature Activities
Robust experience with nature is the best possible foundation for formal study of natural sciences. Even young children can observe changes in nature and look for signs of the presence of wildlife. Older children can learn to identify and classify wildlife and observe animal habits. Children's curiosity about wildlife can drive them to improve their research skills and comfort with many kinds of reference sources. Detail nature study gives kids a chance to use their math skills.
Parents Can Help
Parents can help by encouraging outdoor exploration and by connecting kids with resources that help them understand more about what they see. Try these links to make your family explorations more fun and exciting.
Nature Activities Articles on BigLearning.org
Big Learning on a Snow Day
Book Review: Extreme Nature
Beyond the Bug Jar
Acorns and Pinecones
Book Review: Last Child in the Woods
Toy Review: Bug Vaccuum
African Animals webcam
Find a New Hiking Trail
Book Review: The Kids' Guide to Nature Activities
Cicadas Part 1
Cicadas: Part 2
The Birdhouse Network
On the Road: Florida Everglades
Weather Folk Wisdom
Identifying Tracks and Trees
More Nature Activities Resources
Identifying and Classifying Attracting Wildlife Activity Ideas
Identifying and classifying wildlife
Animal tracks: http://www.bear-tracker.com.
Poison Ivy: http://www.poison-ivy.org
Plant families: http://www.wildflowers-and-weeds.com/Plant_Families/Patterns_in_Plants.htm
Animal Skulls: http://www.d91.k12.id.us/www/skyline/teachers/robertsd/skulls.htm
National Wildlife Federation: http://www.nwf.org/backyardwildlifehabitat/attractspecificwildlife.cfm
Bats and how to attract them: http://www.batcon.org.
Bird feeding: http://www.biglearning.org/treasurebirds.htm
National Zoo's activity ideas: http://nationalzoo.si.edu/Animals/BackyardBiology.
Naturalist Jim Conrad's guide to neighborhood nature: http://www.backyardnature.net.
National Wildlife Federation Kidzone: http://www.nwf.org/kids/