Head out into nature for a day of exploration and adventure with your daycare kiddos! There’s so much to do on a nature walk – the possibilities are virtually endless! With that in mind, we’ve collected 25 activities to make any outdoor foray an exciting journey. From scavenger hunts to “I Spy” challenges, you will surely find something here that will thrill your tiny adventurers and keep them walking through the great outdoors all afternoon. So get ready for some fresh air fun— nature awaits!
Things to Do on a Nature Walk
Encourage kids to collect different types of leaves and discuss their shapes, colors, and textures.
Nature Scavenger Hunt:
Create a simple scavenger hunt with items like rocks, sticks, flowers, or pinecones for kids to find during the walk.
Teach kids about local wildlife and help them identify birds, squirrels, and insects they encounter on the walk.
Have kids touch and feel different natural elements like tree bark, moss, and grass to explore various textures.
Listen and Identify:
Encourage children to actively listen to the sounds in their surroundings, such as the chirping of birds or the rustling of leaves, and challenge them to identify the origin of each sound.
Bring along crayons and paper for kids to create rubbings of exciting textures, such as tree bark or leaves.
Encourage children to enhance their fine motor skills by stacking small rocks or pebbles collected during a walk.
If it’s recently rained, let kids enjoy jumping in puddles and exploring the water.
Encourage kids to smell different flowers and plants, discussing the various scents they discover.
Bring along colored cards or objects and have kids find items in nature that match the colors.
Create simple stories inspired by the surroundings, incorporating elements like trees, animals, and flowers.
On a sunny day, trace the shadows of trees, plants, and even your kiddos to explore how light interacts with objects.
Observe insects like ants, butterflies, or ladybugs up close and discuss their behaviors and characteristics.
Lay down on a blanket and watch the clouds, encouraging kids to use their imagination to identify shapes and objects in the cloud formations.
Use found natural materials like leaves, sticks, and flowers to create temporary art pieces during the walk.
Listen to the Wind:
Encourage kids to close their eyes and listen to the sound of the wind rustling through the leaves and branches.
Climb a Hill:
Help kids climb a small hill, enjoying the sense of accomplishment and the view from the top.
Skip Rocks in a Pond or Stream:
Teach kids how to gently toss rocks into a pond or stream, watching the ripples they create.
Play in the Mud:
Allow kids to explore and play in the mud, feeling its texture and enjoying the sensory experience.
Build a Fort out of Sticks and Leaves:
Assist kids in building a small fort or shelter using sticks, leaves, and other natural materials.
Have a Picnic Lunch Outdoors:
Enjoy a picnic lunch together during the nature walk, taking in the beauty of the surroundings.
Catch a Butterfly in a Net:
Help kids catch a butterfly in a net, observe it up close, and then release it back into the wild.
Play “I Spy” Using Nature:
Engage in a game of “I Spy,” using objects found in nature like flowers, rocks, or animal tracks.
Use a Magnifying Glass:
Provide kids with a magnifying glass to examine small things like insects, leaves, or flowers more closely.
Pick up Garbage:
Teach kids about environmental responsibility by picking up litter found along the walk and disposing of it properly.
Overall, taking a nature walk with kiddos can be a lot of fun for them and you. It may not always turn out the way you plan, but it will never be boring! If your kiddos are prone to get distracted, keep options like snacks and toys handy so that boredom can be easily averted. You’ll also want to ensure you are equipped with proper safety gear, such as sunscreen and bug repellent, so everyone remains safe and comfortable during the outing. A nature walk can be an unforgettable experience for everyone involved. So why not give it a try? Who knows – you might end up having more fun than your kid!