Wednesday, October 21, 2015


Several years ago I read a powerful book called LAST CHILD IN THE WOODS. It reminded me that children need to be connected to nature, and in our technical, fast paced society they are just not getting to spend enough time outdoors.
We all need balance in our lives or things get out of whack. It’s especially critical when children are young and their brains are developing to make sure they have plenty of sensory stimulation, time to be creative, time to use their imaginations, and time to experience all seasons of nature.

Children love to collect things. Aren't they always bringing you rocks or leaves or flowers or nuts? A nature center would be a perfect place to display their treasures and give them the opportunity to observe and investigate natural items. You can purchase commercial kits (such as this one offered by Lakeshore), but you could also create a nature center from natural objects in your habitat. Better get busy while the weather is still good and there are leaves and nuts and all sorts of interesting things outside!

basket of leaves, rocks, shells, pine cones, sticks, nuts, or other natural items (rotate for different seasons)
magnifying glass
clipboard, pencils, paper
field guide book (leaves, rocks, shells, etc.)

*free exploration
*seriating by size
*observing with a magnifying glass
*sketching with a clip board
*identifying with a field guide book
*non-fiction writing