The warm weather and blooming flowers of spring provide the perfect atmosphere for exploration. For young children, this is an opportunity to spend time outdoors learning and appreciating what nature has to offer. A great activity for children in the spring is a scavenger hunt. With a list of items to find and a marker to check them off, kids can spend hours on this outside quest.
This scavenger hunt can be done in the backyard or at the park. Individually, you can have children collect the items or as a group the children can work together to find each thing on the list. A comprehensive nature scavenger hunt can include specific types of flowers, animals and trees. If the hunt will take place in the park, you can also add in things like a swing set, walking trail, bird’s nest and outdoor shelter.
Having children create a spring story is another way to get them outside and paying attention to nature. Set up a relaxing area in your backyard or at the park. A blanket and pillow provide a comfy spot for your child to sit or lay. Then, give them a blank notebook and encourage them to write a story about what they see, hear, smell and feel. Colored pencils or crayons can help them illustrate the story and make their creation even more fun.
This activity isn’t only for children that can write, it can also be changed to accommodate a younger demographic. Instead of giving the child a notebook, give them a large pad of blank paper and washable markers. Look at your natural surroundings together and have them draw what they see, or just choose the corresponding color and sketch freely. This activity can also be great for parent-child bonding in an environment outside of the home.
There is more to nature than just what happens during the day. In fact, spending the daytime and nighttime outside can help children learn about the sun, moon and animal behaviors. To really emerge children in the outdoors consider going on a camping trip. If you live close to mountains or campsites, this is the type of activity children get excited about. They can spend all day and night in the grass, in a lake or just exploring the new environment.
Another way to do this activity is right in your backyard. Pitch a tent and abandon the indoors for a night. Encourage kids to investigate the plants and animals they find in your yard. You can even watch the sunset together and then spend some time looking at and talking about the stars. All of these activities are a great way to get children outside and learning about nature. Spring is the perfect time to get children acquainted with the outdoors and excited about spending time out in the fresh air.