Explore the Science in Nature

Science is best learnt through activities and experiments, especially those related to nature. But to make it effective, it is good to sandwich them between science worksheets or quizzes. These can be customized or relevant worksheets that can be found on the internet. A worksheet can be used to prepare kids for what they are about to explore so they are aware of the specific learning points in an activity. A quiz at the end of the activity or experiment will be a good way to sum up what is learnt and it will also help assess how much has been learnt.

Once you have prepped the kids and they know what they can expect to learn, you can engage them in planned outdoor activities.

Nature Walks

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Walk in the forest” by Derek Gavey is licensed under CC BY 2.0

A walk in a wooded area or a park holds many lessons. Children can learn about the different senses within a short span. They can touch certain plants and feel the different textures, listen to water sources and birds, see the variety of colors and patterns. They can also collect natural objects like rocks, leaves and flowers. A nature walk also offers opportunities to observe various insects, birds and smaller animals like squirrels, snails and ladybirds, and their natural habitats like the ant colonies.

Growing Plants

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Friends” by Kinshuk Sunil is licensed under CC BY 2.0

One of the most common activities that teach kids about plants and how they flourish is by growing small plants and observing the effects of sunlight on their growth. Other plant-specific activities include collecting different types of leaves, understanding the types of roots, differences between vegetables that grow above ground and those that grow underground.

Birds
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DIY Bird Feeder” by Duncan Rawlinson is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Children can learn about the various types of birds out there and mimic their calls. Carrying binoculars on a nature walk is one way to sight these birds. For a more hands-on activity to bring the birds to your garden, children can be shown how to make a bird feeder. There are many ways to do this from the classic pinecone that is smeared with peanut butter and birdseed to something more creative. A toilet-paper tube can be used similarly by coating its outer side with peanut butter and birdseed. A ribbon can be used to suspend it from a tree branch to attract birds.

Sundial

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Sundial” by Chris Hawes is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Sundials are easy to make. All you need is a stick that can be used to push into the soft sand in an area that is not shaded. Kids have to use a watch and mark the direction in which the shadow falls on an hourly basis. A sharpie can be used to mark the time on the pebble. Once it is complete, children will be able to tell time looking at the sundial.


These are just few of the things kids can learn about nature by being out there in nature. It is also a great way to enjoy the outdoors and get some sunshine and fresh air!
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brionnasimpson

Author:brionnasimpson
I am an assistant teacher and my aim is to curate unique learning tips and techniques customized towards kids.

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