Today was a gorgeous day for our last fall program. Ms. Kathryn joined us, who will be taking over the program during Ms. Britt's maternity leave in the spring. The kids were excited to meet her, and wanted to start the day off showing her the teepee shelter in the pine forest they have worked so hard on this semester. Next, they led the way to the sand pit, and we played a few rounds of "Wildlife is Watching" along the way. Finally, we had a "Deer Bounding Challenge" which w
Today was quite rainy and bit on the chilly side, but our brave participants came prepared with extra layers and rain gear, so the weather didn't slow us down! After wandering to the Sand Pit we got our blood moving with a game of "Fox Tails" - which involved lots of running, so this warmed us up quick! We spent the rest of our afternoon making all kinds of creations with locally harvested clay from Old Winter Park, experimenting with different objects as tools, and making le
Today we explored what it's like to use our senses other than sight by playing "Blindfold Caterpillar" and "Nutty Squirrels"! Most humans rely heavily on sight to move through the world, so taking it away when you aren't used to it can be fun, but also very challenging. We had lots of fun learning how differently we perceive the world without our eyes. #Fireflies
One of the great things about Nature Connect is that we learn to love the outdoors, no matter the weather. Despite the cold and rainy conditions we experienced today, we had one participant exclaim at the end of program that this was their favorite day yet! The forest is like an entirely different world in the rain, and we have so much fun exploring it. On the way to opening circle, we stopped off to play in a HUGE puddle that had collected in the pathway. We noticed how some
At Opening Circle today we shared gratitudes, and then received our very own Nature Journals to use at Nature Connect for the rest of the semester! On the first page of the journals was a scavenger hunt filled with items we could try to find in the park, and use our journals to log. Some were relatively easy to find, like animal tracks (there are lots of dogs that frequent the park!), and some were more challenging, like a bird's nest. Those of us who are still working on rea
Opening Circle & Nature Names Today we wandered straight to the Sand Pit to have our Opening Circle since it is becoming one of our favorite places in the park. After sharing gratitudes and stretching through a Sun Salutation, we had a special ceremony where we each picked a Nature Name (or did the Nature Name pick us?) To pick our names, we each reached into a satchel of animal names, and received names such as "Yellow Bellied Slider," "Belted Kingfisher" and "Ground Skink."
Opening Circle We started today's opening circle with a new "Circle Song" and each shared something we are grateful. One friend's gratitude for cheetahs, which is considered a "vulnerable" species at high risk of becoming endangered, sparked a discussion about endangered species. We talked about the impacts humans can have on the lives of wild animals, and how being mindful and limiting our environmental impacts can help prevent animals from becoming vulnerable or endangered.
Today's forecast was looking pretty rainy, but that doesn't slow us down! We suited up in rain gear, packed a tarp for makeshift shelter, and headed into the woods for an adventure. Opening Circle At opening circle we shared gratitudes - lots of appreciation for trees today - and stories of the critters we saw over the last week. Mason shared that he went exploring on an island this week, and saw a green snake. How exciting! It still looked like it may rain at this point, so
Today was the first day of our after school program and it was a blast! After meeting at the gazebo, and saying goodbye to parents and siblings, our seven brave participants headed into the woods with Ms. Britt and Mr. John. Opening Circle At opening circle we each shared our name and our favorite animal of the day. Some even chose to act out their animal and have everyone else guess the animal. We had squirrels, a blue jay, a dolphin, and even a penguin! Once we learned ever