My family and I recently went on a fun little adventure. We did a nature scavenger hunt. I really don’t remember when the idea popped in my head, but it’s a safe bet that I probably saw it on Pinterest.
I found this free printable and my oldest and I cut them out and glued them to these little shopping bags so that the kids could collect their findings during our walk. My kids are 3 and 7. This printable has both words and pictures which makes it perfect! We collected stuff like acorns, grass, feathers, twigs, and pine cones. And we looked for things like flowers, animal tracks, ants, and butterflies.
About the same time that I started planning our scavenger hunt, I realized that our Summer membership to the Pink Palace also includes membership to Lichterman Nature Center. We’ve participated in the Pink Palace Summer membership program for the past two years and I never realized that Lichterman was included! I was excited to check it out. It was pretty awesome!
Pro Tip: Take some water. It’s hot out there on the trails.
Of course you don't have to go to Lichterman to do a nature scavenger hunt. Some of this stuff you can find in your own backyard or you could visit one of the many great parks around our city.
Once we arrived and I had explained the scavenger hunt, we grabbed a map, bought some fish food, and set off on our journey. My kids were so excited to run and look for all of the different things on their list. We saw and collected almost everything. By the end, we were all hot and worn out. We stopped by the Backyard Wildlife Center for some cool A/C and to check out the exhibits.
We had planned to do a picnic and make sculptures with our nature findings while we were there. However, everyone was hot and our picnic happened on the ride home and then carried over to our front yard. After lunch, the kids worked on their nature sculptures using the stuff they had collected on their scavenger hunt and some homemade play dough that we made the night before. It's a messy, silly time: the best kind!
We checked off an item on our Summer Bucket List and had some fun making memories!
Here is the recipe we used for the homemade play dough. Of course I found this on Pinterest too.
- 2 Cups Flour
- 1 Cup Salt
- Juice of a Half a Lemon
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 2 Cups Boiling Water
- Mix all dry ingredients together in large bowl.
- Add the oil and boiling water. Mix well with wooden spoon until dough is formed.
- Give the dough a good knead and its ready to use.