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Early Childhood

Outdoor Activities

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Jessica Paez Jessica Paez 695 Points

What are some fun and engaging outdoor activities that can be done with students?

Betty Paulsell Betty Paulsell 48560 Points

Give students magnifying glasses and they will have adventures of all kinds in science that can lead to all kinds of science discussions. Another thing is prisms on a sunny day.

Ashley Pletka Ashley Pletka 1925 Points

I am not sure what grade you are looking for, but I have attached a website that has some fun and interesting outdoor experiments. We did the giant bubble one in our class. This one was simple, easy, and fun for students of all ages. http://www.science-sparks.com/2014/04/22/outdoor-science-experiments/

Linda Ngo Linda Ngo 2775 Points

provide students the magnifying glass to use to take a close looks at the leaves from the tree. Each students will pick 1 leaf from the tree and take a close glance with the magnifying glass. Then, they will write them down by giving details on what we see and what their leaf looks like. Afterward, they can share their description to class.

Diana Hallett Diana Hallett 400 Points

I think a fun and exciting outdoor activity that can be done with students is to go for a "life walk". Take students to a safe outdoor area and have them look for things that they think are alive. This can be a fun way to build on their understanding of what makes something living. Another fun activity would be to take them outside and have them look for particular things in the environment, in other words, a scavenger hunt. This would be a great way to introduce them to vocabulary in a unit of study (if its on plants, butterfly, trees, etc.) and also provide them with real life references for what those things are.

Elisia Grim Elisia 2040 Points

Children love to look at shadows. You could have them draw around shadows with sidewalk chalk at different times of day so they can see how the sun moving across the sky causes the shadow to move as well.

Emily Rothenberg Emily Rothenberg 3395 Points

Depending on your lesson, there are a variety of fun and engaging outdoor activities that can be done with students. For example,if you are teaching a lesson on plants, you can grow a garden outdoors with your class and have your students observe and take care of their plants. Another example is if you are teaching a lesson about the weather. You can have your students take the temperature outside and teach them how to use a thermometer and teach them about the different weather patterns.

Karly Gibberman Karly Gibberman 1635 Points

A fun way to get to know new students is having them go outside and trace their bodies on the ground with chalk. You can have students draw pictures that represents things about them. For example, things they like, their family, and what they like to do. I did this with a group of children in an after school program and they loved that they got to use chalk! They were excited to share their drawings with the other students. 

Christian Baez Christian Baez 1190 Points

I want to build on Ms. Ngo's idea on observing and describing the leaves students find outdoors. In addition, you could integrate art into the lesson by having students either sketch what the leaves they collected look like or you can have students make simple prints of leaves onto paper. These works of art can be posted into their science journals or displayed in your classroom!

http://www.firstpalette.com/Craft_themes/Nature/Leaf_Prints/Leaf_Prints.html

Bellanira Trevino Bellanira Trevino 205 Points

Sensory motor scavengere hunt would be a fun and engaging activity for students. All you will need is the scavenger hunt lists and pencils for students. You can make your own list or print one out from internet. 

Nelly Terrazas Rojo Nelly Terrazas Rojo 255 Points

There is a variety of outdoor activities that students will enjoy. I remember one activity that involved for us to take something to write on and our activity worksheet which involved questions that will help trigger critical thinking. Our teacher had us write down observations on anything interesting that we saw about insects or plants to later share to the class or in groups. 

Alexa Elizondo Alexa Elizondo 50 Points

Students can explore outside and write down the insects they observe with a short physical descripiton and action being done. 

Julia Copfer Julia Copfer 480 Points

I am completiting my student teaching and I had to create a small unit on habitats. I wanted to make this engaging and I wanted to incorporate an outdoor activity. This was for first grade and the goal was for them to identify what is in the habitat that meets the needs of both plants and animals. I had planned for the students to go outside with a small group and search for habitats. This could have been under a rock, on a tree, in the grass, etc. The students had to draw a picture of what the habitat they found looked like and they had to label what the animals or plants needs to surive in that envionment. It is a very engaging activity to get students outside and exploring. 

I hope this helps!

Courtney Brown Courtney Brown 801 Points

The study of pollination is a great activity to do outdoors with students! I think it would be great to introduce the topic to the students in the classroom, then take them outside to show them where and how it happens. You could also include a scavengar hunt that would include looking for things related to the topic. Then, take the students into the classroom to do their own hands-on, minds-on activity where they would see what the process of pollination actually looks like! Using cheeto puffs and their fingers to show what happens when they touch a cheeto and they get dust on them, just like when a pollinator touches pollen!

Samantha Gonzalez Samantha Gonzalez 270 Points

A scavenger hunt! These type of activities will have kids on their feet :) 

Taylor Andollo Taylor Andollo 720 Points

Hi! I just did a lesson plan on an outdoor activity that is fun and educational. The students are required to use their five senses and observe different plants and animals. This requires you to go outside in an area that would provide good observations and have students really look into plants and animals using the five senses (modify taste). Hope this helps!

 

Anne Lowry Anne Lowry 6915 Points

Hi Jessica

I think I would start by asking the age of the kids and the purpose of the outdoor time.  Is it an outdoor classroom?  Recess time?  Are you limited to one space (e.g. a playground); if so, who do you share it with?  Where are you located - do you have specific environmental challenges due to your location?

Then I would look at the children involved.  What are their interests?  Scavenger hunts and leaf collecting are always good, but if you have a builder, why not build with rocks (permanent or temporary), recreate a local waterway.  Gardening is always good and many herbs are qutie forgiving of being picked (I'm thinking of the mint and lavendar on my playground).  Do you have a lot of birds?  Ebird is a great place to start, and cornell also does feederwatch.  Do you have artists?  Paints from outdoor materials (clay, berries, etc) is a start, as is stick art.  You can even have then break the sticks into smaller pieces to fill space in drawings.  Combine sticks with building for 3D art...

The outdoors is such a perfect place to start inquiry, as almost everything can become a "Why".  What questions can be asked about your space?  Map it and see!

So much depends on your specifics.  The other posts had great ideas, hopefully you can incorporate some of mine as well

 

Have a good day

Anne

Medeya Granado Medeya Granado 690 Points

Take students out on a nature walk around the school or playground. Pass out baggies and magnifying glasses and have them walk and work in partners. Let them discuss with one another about their findings and allow them to bring in leaves or interesting findings to throw in their baggies, whatever is relating to the topic being discussed in class. Allow sharing time towards the end where partners can share with the rest of the class about connections they made with the lesson and their findings.

Stacey Rutledge Stacey Rutledge 1280 Points

I was looking for similar activities earlier this year and I discovered this website. I hope this is helpful http://lifestyle.howstuffworks.com/crafts/quick-easy-crafts/easy-outdoor-science-activities-for-kids.htm

Christina Hernandez Christina Hernandez 1880 Points

Animals and plants can be explored outdoors. It is important not to allow the students to touch any animals or plants while outside. Observation can be a great tool for students.

Jessica Dupaix Jessica Dupaix 2960 Points

Another thing that students can do outside is observe the water cycle in different cups throughout the day.

Rosemary Montero Rosemary Montero 1680 Points

I did this fun outdoor activity with the students. Sponge race. Each participant in this race needs a sponge and two buckets, one filled with water, and the other empty. Participants run from the empty bucket to the full bucket across the yard, filling the sponge and returning to the empty bucket to squeeze the water into it. The first person to fill the empty bucket to the designated line wins.

Guadalupe Soto Guadalupe Soto 1385 Points

I think that outdoor activities are great to keep children engaged and having fun without realizing they are learning. An activity that we did in a K classroom was to go outside and find different leaves. The students loved going around the field area looking for different leaves. They loved being able to discover new leaves. We then went inside where the students took there leaves and painted one side and then made a print of the leaf onto a paper. This helps integrate science, math, and art all into one lesson.

Marci McGlin Marci McGlin 375 Points

I really like this idea for younger students! I think going outside to learn is a great idea and should be done whenever possible. I also really like the idea of turning it into an art project. Students don't do enough science and art and I think creating a lesson that incorporates both is wonderful!!

Jordan Smith Jordan Smith 180 Points

I agree that outside learning is beneficial for all students. On a beautiful day it would be great to go outside and let students perform this activity! I remember doing this when I was young. Students can study leaves from different trees by examining their color, shape and size. They can learn about symmetry during math, and examine the leaves they found to find lines of symmetry. Great activity for learning and physical activity. 

Tiffany Smith Tiffany Smith 1350 Points

One good outdoor event is a nature walk, especially with younger children because everything excites them. You can have them look for butterflies or collect leaves depending on the weather. Once you all are in the classroom or even outside you can discuss their findings.

Ariana Cruz Ariana Cruz 1225 Points

I have attached a link to a family education website that offers several fun outdoor activities for students. http://fun.familyeducation.com/play/outdoor-activities/33394.html

Van Phan Van Phan 1535 Points

When I observed a second grade class, the students were learning about different types of bugs in science. My cooperating teacher allowed the students to go outside to the field of the school to search for them. The school had many rolly pollies laying around in their backyard, so the students got to collect a good amount and observe them. The students really enjoyed exploring the field and observing the bugs. In general, I think if you allow the students the opportunity to use their discovery and exploring skills they will be more engaged and learn much more than doing something such as worksheets.

Linda Ngo Linda Ngo 2775 Points

Last week before Friday, my cooperating teacher had me to teach students about 4 types of clouds. Well, we had a substitute teacher for whole 2 weeks. She had me to read a book about the clouds and we discussed the 4 types and their characteristic. We could have went outside to take a look at the clouds or sky, but it was really cold outside. So we just look at them through the window. Each students also did the activities, where they create their favorite types of cloud out of all 4 types and stick them on the "Our Favorite Clouds Graph"

Erica Preston Erica Preston 2010 Points

I did a lesson the other day where we went outside and observe and record the weather. I did that the whole week of observing and recording what they see in their science journal. This class was first graders. They enjoyed it very much. They record answers such as it is cold or warm, rainy or sunny, windy or calm, etc. The answers were recorded by a drawing, descriptive words, and then sentences.

Stephanie Portillo Stephanie Portillo 1225 Points

I've seen my cooperating teacher have student make a drawing of a peaceful place outside on the concrete basketball court. She taught an art lesson no Peaceable Kingdom by Edward Hicks. The students interpreted the painting in the classroom and painted their own interpretation of a peaceful place outside on the concrete using chalk. This was fun and engaging for her students because they were able to draw outside with chalk. Any child would love this. They had fun and learned at the same time. Hope this helps.

Sarah Benton Feitlinger Sarah Benton 1775 Points

Some of my favorites for young children outdoors: For preschoolers- scavenger hunt. Instead of giving them a list, draw some sections on a big piece of butcher paper. Label each with a word and drawing of something they might find, for example: acorn, pinecone, stick, leaf, etc. I've found they could find things and bring them back to put them on the paper for an extended period of time. Then you can lead discussions about what you found the most of, what colors you see, etc. Build mini-habitats- if you are studying habitats you can have students build a habitat for an imaginary, tiny animal. This is sort of like a fairy house activity, but you will emphasize the needs of the habitat: food, water, shelter, light, space, air. Kids can then give you a tour of their habitat. Get to know a tree! They can make bark and leaf rubbings, see if they can reach their arms around the trunk, observe closely with a magnifying glass to see if there is anything living on the bark, etc. This is great to do over the course of a year so that they can note the changes the tree goes through.

Amy Jorgensen Amy Jorgensen 425 Points

Hi- A few months ago my class did an outside activity based on NGSS 4-LS. We had several materials in class for students to choose from and used the scientific questions to guide our activity: Are mealworms attracted to a certain scent? Students had to present a claim and results. We got to test our predictions with live mealworms on the playground blacktop. I'm sure if you entered this topic online there would be specific resources to guide your lesson.

Lucila Martinez Lucila Martinez 1165 Points

Hello! We did a lot of fun outdoor activities with my little ones during activity times. On a nice day we would set up their art stations outside. Some days we would have a table or two outside with crayons, markers or paint. If we had enough time to set up we would also place the painting easels outside for finger paint (this was for my 4-5 years old). We would give them time to paint their surroundings. We would do it a couple of times in the winter and a couple of times in the spring in order to give everyone an opportunity and also have them label their paintings with their names, the date and the season we were in. This way when we were going over our current season or just the seasons in general we could refer back to their work which they always loved being recognized for.

Maria Martinez Maria Martinez 1555 Points

There are tons of great outdoor activities for students that involve science lessons. One can be the melting of ice cubes in different locations around their playgroup. Students can record their answers and compare with peers why some melted faster than others. Having a Science Scavenger hunt can be an interacting activity for the children. When talking about Biodiversity, the students can go outside and find different organisms and how they are all connected to the same biodiversity. This website has a lot of different ideas and examples that can be used for outdoor activities: http://www.growingajeweledrose.com/2013/03/outdoor-nature-gardening-activities.html

Mendi Butera Mendi Butera 405 Points

I love the idea of taking students outside to engage them in learning, especially at the younger elementary grade level. I student taught kindergarten, and our kids loved any opportunity to get outside. Obviously, we did all of our P.E. outside, which is a really essential part of their day; however, we went outside to engage our students in other disciplines as well. We took our students on a "tree walk" for our science class. Students were learning about the anatomy of a tree and so, we took them outside to obverse them first hand. We also had students draw sketches and engage in discussions about what parts of the tree the recognized. I think any opportunity to get students out of the classroom and engaged outside is great!

Maria Herrera Maria Herrera 730 Points

A fun and engaging outdoor activity that can be done with students is a nature walk. You can take them around the school's garden and teach them about living and nonliving things. They can use their 5 senses to observe and write their observations down in their journals. You can also go outside and look for different types of leaves and create a classroom chart of different leaves. Young children would have a great time doing this! Hope this helps! Good luck :)

Diana Ponce Diana Ponce 1615 Points

Today my second grade class was learning about temperature, and thermometers. They went outside to check the temperature and to the wind . The kids were excited as soon as they heard they were going outside. Actually having them go outside and check the temperature, got the point across much better.

Anne Fonrouge anne fonrouge 380 Points

One great outdoor activity I did with students was a relay race. The students were given a brief introduction about the difference between voluntary and involuntary muscles. They were also taught that our body systems work as a team to help us function. Then, the students were instructed on the rules of the relay race. During the relay race they were able to practice using their involuntary and voluntary muscles, (Heart, lungs and leg muscles). They were also able to practice team work. This would help them make connections to our body and how it works as a team. I liked this activity because not only science standards were fulfilled, but students were able to appreciate the idea of team work.

Madeleine Moses Madeleine Moses 960 Points

Here is a website with some ideas for outdoor activities. http://www.science-sparks.com/2013/05/19/summer-science/

DANA MIRANDA DANA MIRANDA 775 Points

Hello, there are a lot of outside activities you can do with children, it all depends what you would like them to learn. A good activity is for kids to plant their own garden. If you do not have enough room they can plant a seed in a cup. This will allow the kids to watch it grow. I have done this activity with kids before and they love it. Also, it will teach them responsibility because if they don't take care of it it will die.

Rae Melinder Rae Melinder 1265 Points

Not sure which grade you are looking for in this case. A nature walk is always an exciting thing to do with younger grades.

Peggy Ashbrook Margaret Ashbrook 9770 Points

A nature walk is a great idea! Rae--what are some things you do with children on your nature walks?

Shaterika Beasley Shaterika Beasley 1045 Points

What is a great outdoor resource activity?

KRISTEN TROLINGER KRISTEN TROLINGER 325 Points

One of my favorite ideas for outside learning is a nature hike. This activity is fun and free. The students take a walk around their campus and discover nature that they didn't notice before. As an extension have the students collect pieces of nature and create a collage or image from the leaves and rocks or fallen flowers.

Jennifer Malloy Jennifer Malloy 235 Points

Bottle rockets! Kids go crazy over being able to build and revise, and challenge each other! All students will be engaged!

Jody Grandier Jody Grandier 1600 Points

I think outside activities are so essential for a good science class. You could do nature walks, going outside and observing certain things assigned by the teacher, taking water sampkes, soil samples, or collecting rocks. We are doing a great project in my college class which I think would be great to incorporate into elementary science class. It is called the Greening Down Project and it includes picking a tree,observing it twice a wk for 2 months, and recording changes. I have done 4 observations and already see and think about trees differently. I also notice things I have not noticed before. IT'S GREAT!!!!!

Stephanie Matzen Stephanie Matzen 1435 Points

We were talking about solar energy today as a class and one fun activity that is outdoors based could be cooking an egg in a pan and allowing the students to observe the changes. The students could also be given foil, magnifying glass and other materials to see if they can get their egg to cook faster. It is important to review safety issues for this but it can still be fun and engaging. 

Joey Scott Joey Lehnhard 420 Points

You might take a look at the activities in the 2015 Living Schoolyard Month Activity Guide here: http://www.greenschoolyardsamerica.org/2015-living-schoolyard-month-activity-guide.html 

I also made a video about the importance of place-based education for use with teachers and administrators (in case you need to "sell" the idea): http://www.joeynoelle.com/2014/10/place-based-education.html 

Best,

Joey

Maria Andrea Cobo Maria Cobo 1780 Points

In my science methods class we actually spent the whole class time talking about energy. My group had solar energy and our activity included students going outside to see an egg cook on a pan. I think this activity would be great for all grade levels. Minor changes and modifications could be made depending on the grade. This will really apply a class content to the real-world. 

Paulita Garcia Paulita Garcia 860 Points

awesome!

Elyse Chan Elyse Chan 865 Points

I think building a butterfly garden would be a great activity. Depending on the school's resources, students can plant a garden or a few plants around the school. The plant and tree cycle can be implemented and the students get to feel and see the different parts of a plant and how they grow. By taking care of the plants, they will learn what it takes and the amount it took for the plants to grow. 

Yvonne Carrasco Yvonne Carrasco 945 Points

Interesting. Extremely helpful will take this back when I am on the field. 

Cynthia Guzman Cynthia Guzman 1285 Points

Have them explore Animal and plants. Fun activity.

Anny Keys Anny Keys 1135 Points

Outdoor activities are important for students. Outdoor activities can range from free play to purposeful play. For example, for science I had students explore their surroundings to find different natural resources and discuss their findings with peers. 

Sharouq Zabarah Sharouq Zabarah 660 Points

great ideas!

Dannielle Leger Dannielle Leger 970 Points

There are so many great resources out there at your fingertips. One particular site that I found that would be great for a number of ages is as follows.  http://andreasnotebook.com/25-outdoor-science-experiments-for-kids/ This site has so many great ideas that tie science and fun together!!

Jessica Garcia Jessica Garcia 375 Points

I am a really big fan of the great outdoors, i think students should learn outside in order to be active and express themselves freely. Especially when learning science, students should be hands on with their experiments and develop their own learning. A few outdoor activities can include planting a garden as a class and learning how plants grow and their needs. As well as making volcanoes, bubbles, cloud in a cup, bottle rockets and more! I look forward to working on these activities with my future classroom and teaching them how fun science can be when its student directed and hands on!  

Rebecca Mendoza Rebecca Mendoza 2190 Points

What are some fun and engaging outdoor activities that can be done with students? In early  childhood, children are just starting to become aware of their senses. Maybe an outdoor activity that can be implemented with the kids is to use their five senses. They can go smell flowers, feel rocks and grass, listen to what sounds they hear etc. They can also walk around to look for habitats. For example, an ant pile or an bird's nest. For early childhood, activities that involve discovery outdoors will be beneficial. 

Elizabeth Cardozo Elizabeth Cardozo 1805 Points

I recently taught a science lesson about leaves and how they change color because of the seasons. An outdoor activity I planned was to have a "leaf hunt", for which we spent some time outside looking for leaves. I also had the students use their magnifying glass to take a closer look at the leaves.

Laquiesha Estimbo Laquiesha Estimbo 2635 Points

I am doing a force and motion activity with my fourth grade students, what kind of outside activities seem engaging and exciting?

Daniela Rosselli Daniela Rosselli 575 Points

A life walk is a perfect example of an outdoor activity for the students. It is also a good idea, if your school has a garden, to have students take a look at what the garden has and maybe plant their own seeds. 

Elyse Chan Elyse Chan 865 Points

I really love the nature ideas and to add on, they can explore their playground. They can look at force within the swing set or the slide, or for energy, they can look at mechanical energy, potential and kinetic energy. A great example would be kicking a ball and identifying where the potential and kinetic energy take place or doing this with the swings. 

Tori Pinkston Tori Pinkston 995 Points

There are a multitude of ways to get students outside and exploring! It really depends on what grade level you are thinking of. However, for 3rd grade, one of the NGSS standards talks about weather. A good way to get them outside, either at home or in class is to have them take some time to observe the weather everyday and notice certain patterns. In 5th grade, they can start observing the solar system and even make observations about the cycles of the moon! In the lower grades, you could have students observe the life cycles of pumpkins or other plants! Nature walks are always beneficial and fun as well! Here are some more ideas as well!  http://www.science-sparks.com/2014/04/22/outdoor-science-experiments/ 

These are some great suggestions Tori, thanks!! Jessica :)

Amy Thomas Amy Thomas 475 Points

I really like all of the ideas everyone has for activities student can do outside.   The idea of having students go outside and write down what they think is 'alive', or not considered 'alive', would be very fun an educational for many grades.  I would love to see all of the many ideas students come up with depending on what they can observe at their school.

Maxine Dibert Maxine Dibert 1345 Points

I like this idea....it's such a fun and safe way to experience science! It is also a great way to integrate science notebooks. Thank you for the idea!!

Laura Evans Laura Evans 340 Points

There are some really creative and interesting activities here! Thank you for sharing. I love the idea of a good nature walk. It gets the kids outside and active while teaching them about numerous naturally occurring phenomena. They will be learning without even knowing it!

Aubree Kiessling Aubree Kiessling 1365 Points

Thank you for sharing all of these interesting and engaging activities to use outdoors!

Laura Palermo Laura Palermo 655 Points

Have the students explore animal and plant habitats outdoors in their school playground or garden! They can see the relationships between these animals and eventually lead in to learning about the diversity of life in different habitats, and eventually different animal adaptations! 

Jonathan Marin Jonathan Marin 435 Points

Wow, same here. There are many interesting ideas here. Thanks for sharing them. 

Jonathan Marin Jonathan Marin 435 Points

Wow, same here. There are many interesting ideas here. Thanks for sharing them. 

Jonathan Marin Jonathan Marin 435 Points

Wow, same here. There are many interesting ideas here. Thanks for sharing them. 

Hailey Nouis Hailey Nouis 1255 Points

I had my students go outside and draw a picture of the sky for our weather unit! 

Maxine Dibert Maxine Dibert 1345 Points

What a lovely way to spend time in science and super easy to integrate in the day! I can't wait to try this and to see what the students come up with! Thank you!

Maxine Dibert Maxine Dibert 1345 Points

Some outdoor science activities that I have done with 1st and 2nd graders are taking a walk in our neighborhood forest and collect different leaves and bring them back to do leaf rubbings, you can do this with different grasses and evasive plants as well. We have also gone on virtual forest walks. There are a ton online! They are cheaper and kids get a feel of forests around the world.  Good luck! and thanks for the discussion everyone!

Peggy Ashbrook Margaret Ashbrook 9770 Points

The children must love using all of their senses as they walk through the natural area.  By visiting it at different times of the year they can observe seasonal changes whether large or small. 

Becky Cady Becky Cady 1575 Points

Children love nothing more than to be outside, breathing the fresh air and looking at all of the wonderful beauty of mother nature. Collecting rocks is a fun way kids learn about rocks and minerals, plus it's like a little adventure for them to see who can find the most unique rock. Collecting bugs in a jar is also a fun thing for young students to do, it gives them a chance to study the bugs up close and personal through a glass jar. These activities can easily be made into a game by turning it into a form of competition, who collects the shiniest rocks, who collects the biggest bug, etc...

Becky Cady Becky Cady 1575 Points

Children love nothing more than to be outside, breathing the fresh air and looking at all of the wonderful beauty of mother nature. Collecting rocks is a fun way kids learn about rocks and minerals, plus it's like a little adventure for them to see who can find the most unique rock. Collecting bugs in a jar is also a fun thing for young students to do, it gives them a chance to study the bugs up close and personal through a glass jar. These activities can easily be made into a game by turning it into a form of competition, who collects the shiniest rocks, who collects the biggest bug, etc...

Amanda Zaragoza Amanda Zaragoza 895 Points

I always find great recourses from the scholastic web page. Some of these may be useful too you.  http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/lesson-plan/taking-science-outside-summer-activities-young-students

Donna Turner Donna Turner 180 Points

One activity that I enjoyed doing in Biology was an experiment with camouflage. It included different colored toothpicks and we acted as the predators. There were red, blue, yellow, and green toothpicks with about 20 of each color. We had to grab the first 20 we saw and each time, the 20 we grabbed were knocked out of the experiment in the end showing that those who blend in more with the environment (green in grass or yellow in yellow leaves during the fall) tend to not get eaten by the predator as much as those who stand out. It was a pain trying to pick up all of those toothpicks in the end but it was interesting. This was done in my college Bilogy course but could easily be changed to fit for a lower grade level. 

Alyssa Heater Alyssa Heater 875 Points

Have students color with a crayon on paper over leaves to show what the leaves look like. It's fun and engaging. 

Brittney Ronayne Brittney Ronayne 975 Points

These are all such great and fun ideas!

Cindy Alvarenga Cindy Alvarenga 330 Points

Thank you for your post! So many great and educational ideas were provided. I think my favorite and I would really like to include this in my future classroom is the gardening idea. I know it may be hard to get an area to garden at a school but I have seen many vertical garden ideas that I believe will be easy to add to a classroom. The garden can include plants that are edilble to also teach students about nutrition!  

Bianca Moreno Bianca Moreno 55 Points

Something that can be fun is putting kids into small groups to explore all the critters that they can spot. They can draw pictures of all the things they can find from little bugs to birds or squirrels. There can be a discussion at one point either before or after of the insects and animals that are commonly found where you live.

Bianca Moreno Bianca Moreno 55 Points

Any tips for a pre-service teacher on advocating for outside science activities in a traditional school? That's an aspect of teaching i haven't really seen or heard much about in my schooling.

Mechelle Wheeler Mechelle Wheeler 510 Points

For our youngest learners a weather walk would be a fun, interactive activity. Students could go out at the same time everyday to observe the sky, the clouds, and the temperature. Then once returning back to the classroom, you could conduct a classroom discussion about their observations. On large chart paper you could classify and record the weather patterns each day and begin to chart or graph each day.

Alexandra Frankel Alexandra Frankel 410 Points

I have a couple ideas on getting students engaged in outdoor activities! The first activity I thought would be fun would be a simple nature hike. A nature hike gives students the chance to get some physical activity while also observing examples of science within the nature around them.  To integrate ELA, after the hike you could have students write about their hike, what they enjoyed, and what they learned/noticed along their nature walk.  Another activity would be to facilitate a scavenger hunt.  This can be done many different ways.  The scavenger hunt could be based on finding things in nature/outdoors from a list provided to them, find and list 5 new things, or they could have a 5 senses scavenger hunt.  An outdoor activity involving the 5 senses would have to not include taste for obvious reasons.  This would include providing students with clipboards and pencils.  The students would also be given a chart or paper that they would write down their findings. On their paper, the student would describe what their outdoor object looks like, how it feels, how it smells, and if it makes a sound.  To incorpoarte art, the students could draw an illustration of what their outdoor object looked like. Kids love being able to explore and lead their own learning experiences.  These are just a few ideas on how to get them outside and engaged in learning activities!  I hope these ideas are helpful!

Elisa Calderon Elisa Calderon 1650 Points

I think a really fun and educational outdoor activity for kids to do is an activity that I used to do in the fall season when I was younger. I did this at school once and then I continued to do it at home after that. The activity is to go outside and collect different types and colors of leaves that have fallen in the fall. After students collect their variation of leaves, you could go back outside and finish the activity or stay outside if you wish. From those leaves students could create collages by gluing the leaves to paper, cardboard, etc, while learning about why l leaves change color in during the fall. This activity is a way to get kids outdoors while also being educational and also incorporating art into the lesson. I think this activity is especially fun and interesting again, because after I did it as an elementary schooler I went home and would do it on my own. 

Hailey Traver Hailey Traver 2010 Points

There are so many fun and engaging activities, across subject areas, that students can do outside. Students can use chalk to solve math problems, or the teacher can write math problems with chalk ahead of time, creating stations where students solve the problem, and move to the next. This involves movement, which is much more engaging than completing another math worksheet. In regards to science, students can take a nature walk to collect items such as leaves, rocks, and grass. Magnifying glasses can be used during the nature walk, or in the classroom, so students can examine the materials they found in nature. As a kindergarten classroom volunteer, I saw how students enjoyed reading books outside much more than reading books at their desks. I remember how much I enjoyed reading outside during April Reading Month as an elementary school student.

Kristen Mitchell kristen mitchell 1080 Points

Hello! I love to get my students outdoors as much as possible. I like to incorporate brain breaks and have them run outside for a couple minutes to get them refocused. I also like to bring my lessons outside, especially if it is tied to a the current standard I am teaching. I have done a bit of research on taking lessons outdoors just to give the students a fresh scenery; it helps to bring them more into the lesson as well as giving them a bit of time to explore nature on their own and make their own discoveries.

Kaitlyn Howard Kaitlyn Howard 1010 Points

Great things to do outside, is exploring the trees/plants/grass/etc that are around them. Also trying to incorporate exercise while exploring the environment around them outside the school. You can say everyone find a certain kind of leaf, and make them skip or jog on their way to do it. Being outside exploring and exercising is always great for students. 

Kaitlyn Howard Kaitlyn Howard 1010 Points

Great things to do outside, is exploring the trees/plants/grass/etc that are around them. Also trying to incorporate exercise while exploring the environment around them outside the school. You can say everyone find a certain kind of leaf, and make them skip or jog on their way to do it. Being outside exploring and exercising is always great for students. 

Leyah Bradshaw Leyah Bradshaw 490 Points

One idea for an outdoor activity is have the students find a leaf and take a piece of paper and crayon and color over top of the leaf. This will help them observe the leaf. Another idea for an outdoor activity would be to have the students dig in the dirt and have the students observe that habitat. A third activity would be to have the students plant a seed and have them set it outside. Then every other day have the students record their observations.

Emma Davison Emma Davison 270 Points

We had students collect bugs at home and bring them to school to show their friends and we created a "bug board." Now students like to bring in cool bugs for fun, we look at them for a while, talk about them, and then they love to set them free outside. 

Chenhui Liu Chenhui Liu 1170 Points

Hi,Jessica. I think You can take the children outside to blow bubbles and lead them to observe the formation of bubbles, the shape of bubbles, and the color of bubbles reflected by light. Children should love this science game.

Kayley Toth Kayley Toth 130 Points

One time in a science class, we went outside with magnifying glasses and looked around for bugs and wrote our observations. Kind of time consuming, but a lot of fun!

Anikka Casanova Anikka Casanova 155 Points

You can take them outside to explore and find different leaves. Then bring them inside and discuss the leaves they found, have them find someone with a similar leaf, or even draw their favorite leaf they found.

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