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Nature Walk: Animal Tracks

A fun activity to do a few days after a good rain is head to a nearby creek and look for animal tracks in the mud. We went on this kind of walk yesterday in the nature area near our home.  As we walked to the area, I asked my son what animal footprints he…

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Neighborhood: Lizard

We enjoyed a walk around our neighborhood yesterday, to look for some “signs of fall” and to collect leaves.  It was another hot day here in the San Francisco East Bay… in the 80’s!  This does not feel like November, but we can’t complain.  The lizards are loving it, too! Also from this walk:  Neighborhood: …

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Nature Treasure Hunt: Autumn

I ready about going on a winter treasure hunt in Clare Walker Leslie’s book, The Nature Connection, and I thought it would be a fun thing to do during the fall, too, with some slight modifications. Here’s how you do it… On a sheet of paper (one for each child if desired or one paper…

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Going on a Bug Hunt

While my husband was warming up for his bike race on Saturday (see post here… Cyclo-Cross, Monterey Style), my son recommended we follow one of the nearby trails and go bug hunting.  Excellent idea!  We keep exploration tools (bug viewer, magnifying glass) with us at all times, so we’re ready to go whenever inspiration strikes.…

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First Signs of Fall

Yesterday, I wrote about taking your child out on walk to look for signs of Autumn (Take a “Signs of Fall” Walk).  I didn’t feel the seasons changing yet as I wrote the post, but decided to head out for a walk around our neighborhood with my 5-year-old after I wrote the article.  Here’s what…

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Hike and Seek! National Wildlife Federation

I just came across these great fundraising events being offered through the National Wildlife Federation (NWF).  They are not offering an event here in California, but I wanted to let the rest of you know about it, just in case there’s one located near you! Hike and Seek:  This is a 1-2 mile hike and…

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Nature Fun for Kids: Take a Photo Walk

Our new favorite nature outing is to take a walk together with our cameras.  Provide a child with a camera, and he’ll see the world in a different way.  Every day while in Yosemite National Park last week, my son begged us to take him outside to photograph the flowers.  Obviously, Yosemite naturally calls to…

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Exploring the Ringtail Cat Trail, Las Trampas, Alamo

Another great Outdoor Discoveries outing!  Today, the naturalist took the kids up the Ringtail Cat Trail into Las Trampas Regional Park for a “beanstalk lunch hike” to learn about vines.  This is another of my favorite trails in the area, especially on a hot summer day, as the trail winds above a creek through a…

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Birding with Kids, Shadow Cliffs, Pleasanton

Since the week my son turned three, we’ve been attending the East Bay Regional Parks Outdoor Discoveries program, a naturalist-led class designed specifically for three-five year-old children.  Each outing includes a hike and plenty of time for observation, exploration, and play.  To make the classes even more fun, I always invite friends from my Nature…

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Take a Trash Collecting Walk

To celebrate Earth Day today, my son asked if we could walk around our neighborhood and collect trash. He’s been totally into this activity since last summer, when he earned his Junior Ranger badge on one of our visits to Yosemite. The ranger made a big point about continuing to be a ranger after we…

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Our Neighborhood Walk

My boy wasn’t feeling well yesterday and didn’t have much energy. After playing inside the house all morning, by the early afternoon, he was ready for some fresh air. He asked to go on one of our favorite outings… a walk around the neighborhood. We’ve put together several walks from our home over the past…