Day one of Nature Camp was all about finding shapes in nature. We read My Five Senses to better understand how to be aware in nature. To better see outside, we made binoculars as well as bracelets with all different shapes to help be our guide as we looked for shapes in nature. When we went outside on a nature walk, we looked at the different shapes of leaves, pinecones, rocks, and more! We ended our day by playing with tangrams and making animals from the shape pieces.
Tuesday: Today we learned all about trees! Little Explorers read Are Trees Alive? and A Tree is Nice before making their very own tree costumes. We also watched Sid the Seed about how trees grow and mature into a home for other creatures from just a little seed. Together, we drew a nature mural featuring plenty of trees as well as the animals that live there. Some Little Explorers even added elements like rain, thunder, or people to their portion of the mural. Using the leaves and other things we collected yesterday, we added tactile items to our mural.
Wednesday: Day three was all about animals! We spent time learning different animal tracks and how we can find them. We stamped different tracks onto a page before matching tracks with the animal that made them. Little Explorers got familiar with the 3rd floor Michigan Wildlife displays when they went on a rhyming scavenger hunt to find different animals. After exploring some animals, we built a diorama habitat for different snakes. To end the day, we watched some National Geographic videos about some of the different animals we can find in nature and their adaptations to their environment.
Thursday: We “rocked out” in Little Explorers when we learned all about rocks! Rocks can take on many different forms, which we learned about in A Rock Can Be…
and we got to look at some of those different forms. After snack, we went on a short tour of the second floor to look at some of the fossils there since fossils are rocks! We touched a sauropod leg, a Petoskey stone, a mastodon tooth and even dinosaur poop!
We went on a tour of the fourth floor to look at and touch the different rocks on display there before we learned about the rock cycle through sorting rocks and making our own from crayon shavings.
To end our day, we watched a Bill Nye the Science Guy clip about the rock cycle while making our very own pet rocks.
Friday: At our last day of nature camp, we’re discussing all of the sounds in nature! We read The Listening Walk before we went on our own listening walk outside so we could hear nature and neighborhood sounds. We pretended to have a “forest concert” where each camper was a different sound like birds, bugs, or precipitation.
To finish out our nature sounds, we made and decorated rainsticks. Nature is neat!