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Hooray For Dirt!

For generations, parents have understood that playing outdoors is good for kids. Grandparents know that fresh air is good for a fussy baby. There’s even folk wisdom that says every person should eat a peck of dirt before they die! Science is now catching up with common sense as study after study shows just how beneficial nature is for us physically, cognitively, emotionally, and spiritually. It is worth taking a closer look at that peck of dirt…

The book…


Added by Julia Cadieux on April 2, 2015 at 9:39am — No Comments

101 Ways to Get Kids Outside & Spark a Love of Nature

I compiled this list based on all the activities and playing I've done with my two kids over the past six years. Most of these are easy and free ways to be outside and have fun!



Added by Julia Cadieux on April 2, 2015 at 8:00am — No Comments

Gardening with Kids :: Germination Test + Printable

This is a really fun experiment for kids to help with (or take lead on) and depending on how many seeds you have will take an hour or so to start. I think the best part, other than the vibrant red in the beet sprouts, was the wash of cucumber scent that was released as we checked on the cucumber seeds. It was seriously intense, and like a little burst of summer.

You can download the free printable photo tutorial and chart over in the …


Added by Kris Antonius on March 17, 2015 at 6:41pm — No Comments


There is magic everywhere, what are the gifts of the season where you are?

To see full blog post, click here:


Added by Stacey Mackowiak on March 17, 2015 at 6:28am — No Comments

Cedarsong Forest Kindergarten Emergent Curriculum - February 2015

Cedarsong Forest Kindergarten Newsletter – February 2015

By Erin Kenny ©2015


February was again unseasonably warm and dry. Although we had some light morning frost towards the end of month, the forest floor has significantly dried out and we are beginning to shed our rain pants. We have noticed many signs of spring this month, including more insects, new birds, leaf buds and sprouts.


The children have found worms and black beetles beginning to emerge…


Added by Erin Kenny on March 14, 2015 at 3:33pm — No Comments

Citizen Science: Report Monarch Butterfly Sightings

Journey North is a citizen science program that tracks monarch butterfly migration. With the monarch population at a record low, children and educators can help by reporting their monarch sightings and sharing the monarch migration map.

The monarch map (below) can be embedded on your website, so readers can be part of this important conservation project. We'd welcome your participation!

Here's the Live migration map:…


Added by Journey North on March 6, 2015 at 8:22am — No Comments

Getting kids outside

I am interested in getting my bird of prey related business more involved in my community.  I have several projects in mind.  First of all, the Kestrel and Owl nest box program, along with the elimination of the use of rodenticides in our environment.    www.birdsofprey.net  

Added by Karen-Kitty Carroll on February 21, 2015 at 7:00am — No Comments

Friday Photo

I like the way new fallen snow looks so smooth and bright. It sparkles in the sun.

–Madeline Morrissey, almost…

Added by Ann Courcy on February 19, 2015 at 7:50pm — No Comments

Coloring rice was the project of the day. White rice, water color paints, plastic bags, two teachers, and eight Explorers were the ingredients needed for this plan. Each child was asked, "What color …

Coloring rice was the project of the day. White rice, water color paints, plastic bags, two teachers, and eight Explorers were the ingredients needed for this plan. Each child was asked, "What color rice would you like to make?"

"Blue, yellow, pink, light green, turquoise, dark green, orange, and purple," were the answers that rang through the classroom.

In teams of…


Added by Ann Courcy on February 16, 2015 at 10:56am — No Comments

Embracing Winter, Scandinavian Style! by Mary Zentara at The North Branch Nature Center, Vermont

It is zero degrees out and the snow is falling. As I write this blog, my seven year old daughter is outside standing perfectly still next to the bird feeder hanging from a tree branch. Her hand is outstretched and holding a small pile of black oiled sunflower seeds. The warmth of her bodied is sealed in many layers and a balaclava that is covering her chin, cheeks, and nose. A thick hat sits atop her head and the only part of her body that is uncovered is a narrow band around her…

Added by Amy Butler on February 16, 2015 at 10:34am — No Comments


New book available from MIT Press about how and why people engage in caring for nature and community in neighborhoods impacted by poverty, pollution, lack of green space, natural disaster, and ethnic conflict.

Krasny, Marianne E and Keith G Tidball. Civic Ecology: Adaptation and Transformation from the Ground Up. MIT Press. January 2015.


Added by Marianne Krasny on February 15, 2015 at 8:55am — No Comments

Go Climb a Tree

Tree climbing connects

As a professional tree climbing instructor  (yes, there is a such an occupation that requires you to never…


Added by tim kovar on February 11, 2015 at 11:47pm — No Comments

Turkey Vulture -

Turkey Vulture -

Turkey vultures are scavengers, eating almost any dead animal’s carcass.  Also called buzzards, they win no beauty contests in nature.  They have a bald, red head that is tucked into a black-feathered body, and they have a sharp black beak to stab…


Added by Wilder Good on February 10, 2015 at 12:03pm — No Comments

Cedarsong Forest Kindergarten Emergent Curriculum - January 2015

Cedarsong Forest Kindergarten Newsletter – January 2015

By Erin Kenny ©2015


January in the Pacific Northwest has been unseasonably warm and we have observed many signs of spring. We discovered new buds on the elderberry and the huckleberry. We noticed that the hazelnut catkins (flowers) have released their pollen and that the alder catkins are ready to eat. We are seeing new sprouts of miner’s lettuce and sticky wicky (cleavers) and we are seeing lots of new mushrooms,…


Added by Erin Kenny on February 3, 2015 at 5:37pm — No Comments

Cedarsong Forest Kindergarten Emergent Curriculum - Nov./Dec.

Cedarsong Forest Kindergarten Newsletter – November-December 2014

By Erin Kenny ©2014


November and December weather was mostly overcast and cool however we are still experiencing warmer than historical temperatures. The forest floor is covered with debris from the windy season. The children are enthralled by the number of items they find in the debris on the forest floor. One of the most interesting discoveries we made was the huge numbers of red alder seeds on the…


Added by Erin Kenny on February 3, 2015 at 5:37pm — No Comments

The Green Hour

The more I learn about the vital necessity of allowing children daily, unrestricted playtime outside for their whole health, the more I want to make it a routine part of our lives. 

Have you heard of The Green Hour? The National Wildlife Federation recommends spending one hour outside each day for our holistic health. 

I just took the Pledge to be Out There which says I'll make getting outside a priority for my family.



Added by Julia Cadieux on February 2, 2015 at 7:00pm — No Comments

Magic In The Woods - coming this summer!

This year the Vashon Wilderness Program is offering truly wondrous summer camps. If you are on the island, have connections to our island (Vashon, WA), or want an excuse to pass a week (or more!) on our beautiful, relaxing island, do check out the camp descriptions and see which ones may be a fit for your kids or for the special child in your life. We even have a camp this year for…


Added by Jane Valencia on January 30, 2015 at 8:13pm — No Comments

Five ways we’re developing our Nature Brain with outdoor play

Here are five ways we’ve been developing Nature Brains, helping our brains reach a new depth of skills, calm, and connections, during nature hikes and time at Nature Play Stations.  Count down to many happy memories and a future of finding green spaces where you can go to feel centered and inspired.

5.  Reaching Developmental Milestones

4.  Making Sense of Our…

Added by Deanna Novak on January 27, 2015 at 9:56am — No Comments

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