A nature scavenger hunt is a great outdoor activity that encourages children to look at nature and their environment with increasingly observant eyes. A scavenger hunt can be done anywhere and at anytime of year.
In preparing for a scavenger hunt we use nature field guides to make a list of items we might discover in the area we are hiking. It is important to consider your location and also the season so that you include common objects that are not too difficult to find.
We use wooden coins with nature objects stamped, drawn or painted on. We include the name of the item on the back of the coin to help children learn to identify their nature treasures. Labelling the items also helps children who are early readers. My children attend French immersion education and so we include both French and English words on the coins.
What you will need for making the wooden nature coins.
- Metal Book Rings - these are used to attach the coins to backpacks or onto a lanyard to wear on a hike.
- Stampers and Ink Pad - permanent markers, pyrography pens, and paints can also be used.
- Dremel Tool with Drill Bit - this is used for drilling a hole into the wooden coin.
- Wooden Coins
The children can be included in all aspects of this activity from planning and making the nature coins, hiking and discovering new objects in nature, and recording their nature find collections following the hike.
We use a camera to take photos of the items we find in nature and leave the natural objects where we found them. Following the hike our collection of nature images can be included in a nature photo album or children can use the images as a guide to paint or draw the items into a nature journal. This post hike activity encourages children to take a closer look at their nature finds.
Wishing you many wonderful outdoor adventures as you discover the natural world with your children!