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Tuesday, June 24, 2014


A few weeks ago I was in Fort Worth doing training for the Learning Institute of North Texas. They hosted the workshop at the Fort Worth Botanic Garden. Well, you know how teachers are always on the look out for free things – and one teacher found these cool “nature scopes” that children could use to explore the garden. On one side was a map and on the other side were pictures of items in the garden that children could see, hear, smell, and touch. Although you might not live in Fort Worth, wouldn’t this be a great idea to adapt for your school playground?

1st – Take a walk and let children categorize things they can see, hear, smell, and touch.

2nd – Make a scavenger hunt with those items. Children could draw pictures, use labels, and so forth.

3rd – Have children do descriptive writing by completing these sentences:
                        I can see____.
                        I can hear____.
                        I can smell____.
                        I can touch ____.

4th – Let children create “nature scopes” from items in a scrap box.

5th – Ask children to draw a map of your school playground.

Whether you do a “stay”cation or visit some place exciting this summer, always be on the lookout for freebies that you can adapt for your classroom. Something as simple as maps and brochures from different visitor centers can open the door to new learning opportunities.