Friday, August 13, 2010

Fun Friday: Tour Neighborhood Gardens

Fun Friday activities are quick-and-simple ways to explore nature in your own backyard.

THE IDEA: Take a tour of our neighbors’ front gardens

It doesn’t get much simpler than this: Take a walk around your neighborhood paying special attention to front gardens.

OUR NOTES FROM THE FIELD
Before we headed out on our tour, I asked the big explorer to stop me anytime he saw a garden he liked, then tell me why. I loved his choices, and his reasoning even more.

For instance, he said this array of greenery reminded him of our trip to a tropical rainforest at Lyon Arboretum earlier this spring.


He loved how the flowers on this house spilled across the roof.


He called this one the “fairy garden” and excitedly ran up to discover all of the gnomes and other whimsical creatures hiding out everywhere.


And thought this tree swing was calling his name.


It was these special, inviting spaces that seemed most alluring to him. How sweet is this?


I enjoyed our tour and the time spent with the big explorer. His appreciation for nature is growing every day and it truly warms my heart.

TAKE-HOME TIPS
Touring your neighbors’ gardens is as simple as heading out the front door and taking a walk around the block. To make it a little more interesting:
  • Go for a ride. If you usually take walks around your neighborhood, why not go for a bike ride instead? You’ll travel a little further from home and enjoy a different vantage point.
  • Let your kids snap some photos. Give the kids a chance to interact with their environment. It’ll also let you see how they see things, which in and of itself is a valuable lesson.

MORE IDEAS FOR OUTDOOR FUN

Feel like summer is slipping away? Join the club! But no worries – there’s still plenty of time to enjoy the great outdoors. This week, you can:
Hope you have a wonderful weekend outdoors with your explorers young and not-so-young alike!

8 comments:

  1. Debi

    I'm so into these sorts of walks. I encourage a "light" walk too to see all the different lights around the place. And a Christmas walk too to look at everyone's decorations.

    For ambulatory activities to do with children on the move, check out http://creativestarlearning.blogspot.com/2009/09/ambulatory-activities-to-go.html They should complement your suggestions nicely.

    Best wishes
    Juliet

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  2. @Juliet: We love Christmas light walks! We even head to different neighborhoods to look for bigger santas or reindeer or the like.

    Thanks for sharing the link. Great post!

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  3. What a great idea! We take walks through our neighborhood all the time, but I hadn't thought about discussing the gardens. We'll have to give this a try sometime.

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  4. @Sarah: It's fun to add a little something different to your usual walks & it's also one way to help kids take notice of the nature in their own neighborhood.

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  5. We sometimes take pajama walks when the kids are roudy in the evening. Gets them excited about getting into pajamas (bonus for a tired mom). I hadn't thought about trying to focus on something, such as favorite gardens. GREAT IDEA. Will try that one next time.

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  6. @Lora: We have yet to take a walk in our PJs - I love that idea!

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  7. This is a fun idea! We'll chat away together about the things we see on our walks, but I hadn't thought to find a specific theme to focus on. Usually Shane's all about either the animals we see (dogs, cats, chipmunks, etc) or the vehicles.

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  8. @Crystal: As long as Shane's enjoying his time outdoors, that's great. You can save this idea for a time when he's a little less inspired!

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