Get outside

2nd February 2021

We live in a beautiful area that we often take for granted and don’t always use to our benefit. Just taking a walk in the woods can have a calming and refreshing effect on our mind and body.

Taking time out to play a video game requires your directed attention which makes the brain tired and stops it from functioning at its optimal level. However, with time spent in natural surroundings enables the brain to rest and recover.

Spending time in green spaces or bringing nature into your children’s everyday life can benefit them both with mental and physical wellbeing.

Go for a walk – what trees are in the gardens / park / wood

Go on a Leaf Hunt: Identify different types of leaves on your walk. Can you find 5 different types of leaves. APP LeafSnap

Make a leaf Kebab – find a stick and then skewer leaves on to it – identify the leaves.

Go on a colour hunt. Find things on your walk to match a shade of green / brown

Sensory scavenger hunt – collect items from the park / wood

Sound hunt – what can you hear? What noises can you hear from nature and what is manmade?

Be animal detectives – look for marks in the mud – who made them. Which bird does this feather belong to?

Build a tower with rocks – Inuit standing stones

Puddle jumping

Go geocaching

Go for a Bike Ride

Go for a scooter ride

Identify the Birds in your garden / neighbourhood

Make Bird Feeders

Build a den

Hunt for minibesats

Climb a tree

Make mud faces on trees

Make sculptures with natural objects

Use a stick to draw a picture in the mud

Do some bark rubbings

Collect some items from nature on your walk and then take them back home to make a collage

Make a nature weaving

Take some photos on your walk to create a photo journey / photo collage

Rock Painting – paint some rocks and hide them for other people to find – Forest of Dean Rocks

Make a rain guage

Make a raft from sticks and float it in a puddle.

Catch some raindrops / or snowflakes on your tongue.

Bubble Blowing

 

Frozen suncatchers

There are three main things you need water, a container and natural ingredients for decoration. The water and containers can be found in any kitchen. It’s the natural elements that your children collect from outside and include in their suncatchers that will make them each unique and individual. You could add a few drops of food colouring to make a rainbow of beautiful colours. 

If you want to hang your decorations in a tree add a piece of string, ribbon or wool in a loop so that it will freeze in place giving you a built in hanger for your frozen suncatcher.

 

Once you have made them and you are waiting for your suncatchers to freeze, take the opportunity to educate! Talk to your children about the temperature at which water freezes and what happens to the water as it solidifies. Discuss the temperature outside and take a guess as to how long it will take for the water to freeze. Check on the status of your suncatchers and note the changes taking place. 

After the water turns to ice, gently remove the ice suncatcher from the mold and examine your frozen suncatcher creation. Hang your sun catchers from a tree branch or window sill. Let your children use them to decorate a tree or bush in the backyard. The sun shining through the ice will create such a beautiful outdoor sight you’re going to want to do these year-round!