Getting outside with your kids is so important. Nature is just a whole new world for our kids and ourselves! These simple nature walk activities in this post will help you have fun while being outside. Being outdoors calms everyone’s spirits, and a sense of “awe” takes over. The birds, the bees, the grass, the way the armies of ants are building their homes, the sun leaking through the trees deep into the afternoon: it’s a beautiful orchestra of light, color, smells, and sounds. As a mom, I am always looking for opportunities to get my kids out into Creation, and to marvel at the world around us. Here are five of our favorite nature walk activities:
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A Scavenger Hunt for these Nature Walk Activities
Getting out with the kids for nature walks is a weekly activity for our family! We usually do these on Wednesdays each week when both kids are home all day. It’s fun to bring along friends for play dates, or just enjoy a relaxing afternoon together.
When you start your scavenger hunt, two of the most important items to bring are a basket and snacks. You need something to collect your treasures in, and food to keep your kid’s spirits bright! I’ve found that lately, my kids have been loving picnic and charcuterie style snacking. It is fun, low pressure, and they usually gobble up a whole plate of bite sized foods. My favorites to throw on a plate are some fun cheeses, a variety of crackers, prosciutto, grapes/berries, and then usually some bell pepper strips!
Here is a quick download for a printable nature walk scavenger hunt! This is a fun list of easy to find nature items that could be found on a hike, park, or sometimes in your backyard! Just print this list out, grab a basket, and bring along some pens or colored pencils for your kids to check off the list. Now you are ready for some nature walk activities!
Some of my kid’s favorite items to search for are leaves, sticks, bugs, moss, salamanders, and fun rocks! My son loves finding the items and putting them into the basket. It gives him a sense of creativity, and increases his awareness for the world around him. He will venture down into the creek, or overturn rocks just to see what is underneath them. We had some cows in our pasture recently, and after a few months, if you took a stick and lifted the cow patties, earth worms would just start wiggling out and scooting around. It was so fascinating to watch!!!
Nature Walk Treasure Box Carton Activity
After you go on your scavenger hunt, here are some ways you can use the nature finds!
This color sorting egg carton activity is so easy and fun. Here is a downloadable file for the egg carton rainbow colors! Just print them off, cut the circles out, and gently press into the bottom of the egg carton. There is no glue or tape required, they fit nicely in the base!
Then, have your kids search through their finds and see if they can match the colors of the findings up with the colors in the egg carton! I also love that the egg carton is light enough to throw in a basket and take with you outside on your walk! You could do the activity mid-walk, or later when you get home. This is a fantastic way to engage your kids and help them work on color identification with natural materials!
This an activity that I’m sure we all have done before, but it’s easy to forget that this is so fun for kids! This one is so easy and colorful- just take your kids leaf findings, place them behind a simple white piece of paper. Color over the top with something like these bees wax crayons, and your kids will squeal with excitement as the leaf suddenly appears! This is also a great activity for smaller children who don’t know how to color in the lines yet. It will help them have some practice time on paper as they watch the patterns of the leaves emerge!
Foraged Clay Press
If you haven’t used air dry clay yet with your kids- this is a fun time to try it out! It dries within a few days and is easy to use. My neighbor, Rachel, introduced me to this, and we did nature pressings up at her house one afternoon! You could take a pin and make a small hole to turn it into an ornament for a handmade Christmas present later in the year, or just to hang up on a wall somewhere! These almost look like little fossils and are so pretty and simple. After you finish your designs, put them on a cookie sheet to dry out on the counter for a day or two! This activity also reminds me of my other DIY Nature Suncatchers that I did earlier in the season. This is also a great activity to use the ferns and buttercup flowers in!
Nature weaving is SO much fun to create! All you need to do is find a “Y” shaped stick, and weave some twine around it in a zig-zag direction. Just knot it off at the top and keep wrapping it all around to secure it. Then, you can give it to your kids and they can weave in sticks, flowers, greenery, or bark to create a design! There are so many fun combinations of these to try, and they are quick and easy for kids to do. After you are done, your child can take this home and admire their findings all in one place! Once you give kids a task such as, “go see if you can find some pretty flowers and leaves!”, they will whole-heartedly take on this task and be more curious than ever about the world around them.
So, there you have it! Five wonderful new ideas to try the next time you are exploring outside with your kids. I can’t wait to hear about what all you discover! It’s amazing how a task for our kids opens our eyes as well. Once we are curious, we notice the little details that our Creator has placed all around us. This time of the year is so special and magical! I hope these nature walk activities help you explore your backyard or community even more than you did before.
I also created a really fun nature matching game that is free to download here! Hope you enjoy this season as much as we are.