Nature Discovery Walk

31 03 2012

LBM’s Dad is home for the weekend (he’s working away during the week and only home at weekends) so doing something as a family was always on the cards. BJJ’s suggested going to the park. Twice. No interest on the part of LBM. Mmm, how to get him out of the house? A Nature Discovery Walk. Within seconds of the suggestion he was sorting out his magnifying glass, tweezers and a bag to carry it all in. Getting the rest of us together took longer. One of the activities in my Easter discovery box included a nature palette which could be used to search for different coloured signs of spring whilst out and about. I added that to the bag and we were off. Collecting things on a walk like this does involve trying to encourage a recently turned four year old not to pull up flowers. It doesn’t always work hence the daffodil we collected for yellow. On the whole though he picked up fallen twigs and leaves as well as flower heads that had fallen off already. He loves using his magnifying glass (which he held against his eye as he walked along. Very Sherlock Holmes) so we spent a lot our our walk looking at nature up close and searching for ants. They weren’t out in the cold weather so we had to make do with just finding plant life.

When we got home LBM and I sorted our find. I left out matching colours of paper and let him choose how he sorted things. The daffodil was originally sorted onto the green page because it had a green stalk but when he reviewed how many things were on the yellow page he changed his mind. As we were discovering things we tried to name everything we had found (many items were called hyacinth by LBM who’s obviously paying attention to the spring flowers on offer!) My knowledge of exactly what we’d picked up was a bit limited on some things so I decided that would could become botanists and name the collected parts by ourselves. It’s amazing what children can come out with when you start discussing what something looks like in shape and texture. “Pip Pipes” does explain the stamens on blossom incredibly well as does the more unusual “Octopus Bims” for the individual flower heads found on a hyacinth. “Loony Moon” described the tiny craters visible on a piece of lichen.

My eldest son is a much more investigative, creative child so getting him out into the park did involve something a little bit more interesting than the swings and slides. The park is no problem for BBL though who has recently taught himself to go down slides backwards (he’s 14 months). He decided head first on the big slide was just as cool today. Glad Daddy was there to catch him. I can only hope that BBL finds a Nature Discovery Walk as attractive in the future. I suspect though that I’ll be having to deal with him finding the only poisonous plant in the area.





























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