Who doesn't love a scavenger hunt? Get outdoors and start "scavenging" for treasures in nature. Nature watching can be exciting as you collect specimens, take pictures of animals, and do fun activities. This is a great afternoon project for a group of kids, or it can be expanded into a summer-long family project. Go to a nearby park, lake, pond, or beach. You can even scavenge in your backyard. Keep in mind that some places (such as certain national parks) don't allow you to pick any wildflowers, and it's illegal to collect feathers from certain species of birds, etc.
You can put all your supplies in a backpack so they are easy to carry. You may also want to bring a pair of binoculars if you have them, and a magnifying glass for studying insects, rocks, or leaves up close. Don't forget to bring a water bottle and a snack - hunting can work up an appetite!
You can use this worksheet as a scavenger hunt list of things to find. See how many of the fourteen objects on the list you can spot. Can you find a bird? Can you see any insects? How about different types of rocks and trees? If you're near the ocean you may be able to find shells and seaweed. Using the worksheet, color the things you saw, and add your own drawings to the list for other things you saw. Below is a list of other things you can look for and activities to do to explore nature.
Things to See
Things to Collect
Things to Do
Things to Photograph
If you were in the woods, why didn't you find any shells? If you were by the shore, why weren't there many plants, trees, or flowers? The type of animals that live on a beach wouldn't live in the woods. Different environments or biomes have different kinds of rocks, trees, plants, and animals. The type of place you chose to go to on a scavenger hunt meant that you would only be able to spot certain objects on the list. You were probably able to spot lots of other things that weren't on the list. When we look closely, we can discover a lot of fascinating things about the world around us. Nature exploration means learning that not all places are the same. Each place has a unique variety of living things, and every landscape is different.