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Chip Donahue's Blog (12)

Roaring and Gnashing! Long Live Maurice Sendak!

Thank you, Sir...  You engaged our children and will forever cause people around the world to see the importance of

exploring their world.

making mistakes.

climbing a hill.

facing their fears.





having "nakie" time.


finding magic in a special place.

feeling sad.

finding a way to express themselves.

a warm dinner at the end of the day.



Added by Chip Donahue on May 8, 2012 at 8:58am — 2 Comments

Do you like your new hat Daddy?

Our oldest came in the kitchen while I was fixing dinner last night (turkey burgers) and saw me sporting the new CRPA (Cowpasture River Preservation Association) hat that I got in the mail today.  She giggled and said, “Do you like your new hat, Daddy?”

 Yes, indeed I do.  These busy days have me pining over the leisure hours and days we spent…


Added by Chip Donahue on October 12, 2011 at 12:02pm — No Comments

As the summer winds down for me…

School starts up again for me tomorrow.  Wow!  I really can’t believe that.

With that said, it explains why I have been trying desparately to check too many things off of a day’s list lately.  A hike here, a visit there, a book read and a house cleaned.

While visiting the library, I stumbled upon a sweet treat: Pioneer Naturalists: The Discovery and Naming of North American Plants and…


Added by Chip Donahue on August 11, 2011 at 8:52pm — No Comments

Advice FOR Natural Family Leaders BY Natural Family Leaders

In January of 2008, Ashley and I started Kids In the Valley, Adventuring!, a free nature club for families in Roanoke, Virginia (www.kidsadventuring.org). Since then, we have connected with wonderfully creative people around the United States and beyond who have started their own nature clubs. To increase our conversations and to document them to help other families, we created a facebook page for leaders as well as the NING…


Added by Chip Donahue on August 8, 2010 at 9:00pm — 2 Comments

Paging Robert Michael Pyle, this one's for you.

“When people connect with nature, it happens somewhere. Almost everyone who cares deeply about the outdoors can identify a particular place where contact occurred. This may have been a wilderness, a national park, or a stretch of unbounded countryside, but more often the place that makes a difference is unspectacular: a vacant lot, a scruffy patch of woods, a weedy field, a stream, a green ravine…


Added by Chip Donahue on March 9, 2010 at 6:10pm — 1 Comment

I'm heading to the Natural Teacher's page. I need help quick.

One of my students just raised her hand and said she wanted to go home.

I asked her why and she mumbled something that sounded like

"I want to go home and play on tree limbs."

I replied with, "That sounds great! I haven't climbed a tree in a long time."

One of her fellow classmates remarked, "Mr. Donahue, she didn't say tree limbs. She wants to play on Free Realms." This is some sort of online video game. My students are 7…


Added by Chip Donahue on March 5, 2010 at 10:30am — 1 Comment

How my 7-year-old taught me to ride a bike... metaphorically.

Our 7 year old has a way of, let's say, amping things up. Each event has to be a bit more dangerous than others. In fact, he is the reason that the City of Salem Parks and Recreation cut all the lower branches out of the trees at Longwood Park. He is a skateboarder and a tree climber. He is, indeed, an outdoor artist.

On one particular day, again at the same park, Parker decided to take his bike for a ride around the paved area - yes, the one that now says "No bikes." This was his…


Added by Chip Donahue on February 22, 2010 at 6:44pm — 5 Comments

Winter is long, spring is coming along - with inspiration...

Cold, snow too deep to trudge with little companions.

Homework and dinner, stories and bedtime.

The time comes and goes. I find myself wishing for those moments when I could pick up my kids after work and drive off to a local park for some time together. Our green hour, or half or so. Now, there's nothing but white and cold and early sunsets.

But last night, as I was watching Richard Louv's presentation for the Blank Foundation, I felt the warming rays of…


Added by Chip Donahue on February 17, 2010 at 10:43pm — 1 Comment

Stan "The Man" Lee is excited about our next Nature Club for Families event!

Here are the details:

Uncanny, Amazing, Spectacular, Invincible, Fantastic!

Dec 27 2:00pm - Dec 27 4:00pm

Come out and play with KIVA to help us celebrate the 87th birthday of the man who re-invented adjectives and many, many superheroes - Stan "The Man" Lee! Meet us in Eureka Park for an afternoon of play and imagination - KIVA style. Wear your favorite superhero costume, or be like Stan and make up your own superhero!

Well, that was the note I sent out to our… Continue

Added by Chip Donahue on December 1, 2009 at 5:54pm — 1 Comment

David Sobel: This one was for you!

Yesterday morning, twelve cars travelled up the Blue Ridge Parkway towards Peaks of Otter. Looking back at the long line of cars was only a foreshadowing of the fun that was about to happen. Big kids, little kids, and some brave parents took on the challenge of getting to the top.

Here’s a reference:…


Added by Chip Donahue on November 15, 2009 at 6:59pm — 1 Comment

Help Nature Clubs for Families make a master list of events for the year!

Here is a growing list of special events. We have been trying to make a master list resource of special natural events that happen yearly. Please add to the list!

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service Jan. 19

National Wildlife Week March 23

World Water Day March 22

Earth Hour March 28

Leave No Child Inside Days April 20-25

Earth Day April 22

Guerrilla Gardening Day May 1

National Doughnut Day - love… Continue

Added by Chip Donahue on September 16, 2009 at 7:08am — No Comments

Nature Club for Families Leaders Unite!

During this, the summer of 2009, I have had the wonderful opportunity to work with the Children and Nature Network to help connect existing Nature Clubs for Families leaders through social networking sites such as Facebook, Yahoo Groups, Flickr, Twitter, and through personal e-mails. Wonderful information was gathered from the participating groups and this information will be later used to show the fine efforts of families who are willing to step up to host nature club events within their… Continue

Added by Chip Donahue on August 4, 2009 at 9:05pm — 4 Comments

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