November 25, 2016

Let your kids go outside!

Let Your Kids Go Wild Outside: Creative ways to help children discover nature and enjoy the great outdoors
by Fiona Bird

Using a combination of crafts, games, and short biology lessons, Fiona Bird aims to get families outside and exploring! She begins with a detailed intro that covers what to wear, what to bring, and what to avoid to be safe. Since the accompanying pictures are often small or absent altogether (most likely to produce a book of manageable length), she urges parents to also invest in a good plant identification book. Chapters cover various nature habitats: woods, meadows, seashore, wetlands, and home gardens. So proximity to these areas are key, which is probably easier in England (Bird is British) than urban North America. Kids can try identifying animals by tooth marks, make string out of nettle stems (first remove the prickles), make ink out of berries, play beach hopscotch, or cook up some garden pesto. Along the way, they'll get a few lessons in pollination, tidal zones, and types of seaweed, and meet a few famous naturalists. There's a dearth of night-time and rainy/snowy activities, but hopefully, kids will be inspired to go out anyway.

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