Last year, I had great intentions of making nature hikes a priority. However, our school year last year felt chaotic from beginning to end. Adding something extra – that had to be done away from the house, with snacks or food, drinks for everyone, sketch books, colored pencils, cameras, etc – seemed a little overwhelming. We did what we could in our backyard, but this year I hope to do more. So, after reading quite a bit about Charlotte Mason’s theory behind nature walks and some help from this blog, I feel a little more prepared and ready to make this a regular part of our year.
Last week, with Kevin as our tour guide, we headed out to a local park for our first hike of the year. It was a beautiful day and the girls were thrilled – they all love to hike, look for bugs, take pictures, etc. When I go by myself, I put Daphne in a stroller and we take only paved paths. Since Kevin was with us, we decided to veer off the paved path and take a true nature hike.
. . .and we are off!
Here are some of our finds:
This squirrel was totally unaware of us watching him. He sat there and gnawed on his nut while we snapped pictures and watched him. Daphne was amazed – she kept pointing and giggling.
Look closely. . .on the red leaf
The girls spent some time drawing pictures in their nature journals. They gathered a few items: multi-colored leaves, flowers that had fallen on the ground, shells, dragonfly wing, etc. This year I am more prepared. I have nature journals, colored pencils, ziploc bags, and bug spray in a bag so all I have to do is grab the bag and head out (with water and snacks, of course).
Other than Kevin ending up with poison ivy (it was to be expected – he just looks at it from afar and ends up it all over), we had a great hike, and everyone napped/rested well after an hour hike. We are looking forward to the next one.