Proverbs 22:6 – Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old, he will not depart from it.
“Ask the animals and they will teach you, or the birds of the air and they will tell you, or speak to the Earth and it will teach you, or let the fish of the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.” ~ Job 12:7-10
Discuss Nature Opposites:
Take a nature walk ~ Explore the ABC’s, shapes and colors in nature. Play “I Spy” games or scavenger hunts based on alphabet letters, shapes or colors. For instance, you can ask the child to identify as many blue things as they can or to see how many circles they see in nature. An alphabet based activity would be to have the child find one item for every letter of the alphabet (you can keep track on a clip board) or explore how many items they can find based on a specific letter. There are lots of ways to incorporate an alphabet, shape or color based lesson in nature. The main thing is to expand their view of nature by introducing new aspects. After the nature walk, have the child re-create the colors of nature in a drawing. They can use this form to draw and write about it.
Leaves and their skeletons – This hands-on activity is best for autumn season when there are more differences in color, but you can do this anytime you have a variety of leaves/trees to work from. I took my son out for a nature walk to look at different trees and their leaves. We collected a number of them and brought them home. I used playdoh to press each one so my son could see the skeleton line. We discussed the differences in skeleton, shape, texture and color from the samples. Then we pressed and dried the leaves and made a sample page for him to keep.
Songs & Poems:
National Geographic Young Explorer website offers online versions of their nature/science themed magazine geared to kindergarten and first grade levels. They have two years’ worth of issues available online.
PBS Kids has a ‘Nature Games‘ section with a handful of games to choose from.
Starfall website has a bird themed riddles section featuring four different types of birds in online story format: goose, crane, catbird and blackbird.
enature.com is a nature based website I use particularly for their ‘Field Guides‘ section because of its extensive listing. The online encyclopedia format includes classification, type and family for animals and plants (ie, birds/owl/barn owl). Within each family, you get a listing of specific scientific and general information featuring photos, description, habitat info, observation tips and more. In the birds catalog, it also has a button for each bird so you can listen to their call. The site is well organized and helpful in teaching children about things they may not get to see for themselves in their surroundings. These are the categories featured:
nature = la naturaleza
colors = los colores
shape = forma