Posts Tagged “bugs”

Soak Up Last Days of Summer with Nature Explorer’s Handbook

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Although this post contains affiliate links, the opinions expressed herein are honest and my own.

Nature Explorers Handbook Profile Pic

In the Nature Explorer’s Handbook, youngsters will be enticed to explore the outdoor world of their backyard with the colorful and easy to read pages, checklists and varying activities. Encouraged to get dirty, get close to the ground and up close to nature… Science has never looked so accessible and fun!

Nature Explorers Handbook 2This handbook is tabbed with five sections:

Awesome Bugs

Garden Critters

Birds and Bats

Woodland Adventure

Plants

Splashes of tips and trivia make this resource engaging and cool. The spiral bound handbook is easy to carry and keeps the page open while your child is busy exploring on their own.

Nature Exporers Handbook 3

Other features include Safety Tips and “Do It” suggestions, 60+ stickers and a fold out calendar for seasonal exploration. I love that Nature Explorer’s Handbook has thought of clever ways to draw children into scientific discovery using checklists, activities, journalist techniques and showcasing year-round exploratory advantage.  Part journal, part workbook, this Nature Explorer’s Handbook is designed for taking notes, doodles, and on the go discovery… and it couldn’t be done better! Be sure to have a pencil in hand with this book.

Checklist allows children to track their progress and really zero-in on the details of their findings.

Superb resource!

Nature Explorers Handbook

PS – The blue Para’Kito Mosquito Repellent band on her ankle was previously provided as a review product… and we truly love it. You can read our review of this outdoor necessity item HERE.

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Blue Sky Studio's Epic: More Movie Learning Fun

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Colorful, imaginative and super creative, the family movie Epic from Blue Sky Studios takes you to an entirely new world within our existing one. Beautiful animation and well-thought out characters put this film on the top of our “must-see-again” family list. My daughter and I saw it on the big screen and that’s best considering you are transported to a tiny world.

So after you catch the movie, which opened on May 24th, consider these other activities to make this an educational opportunity about the small wonders around us. You might want to gently explain the part about tiny men in the movie being for entertainment purposes but also that it is wonderful to let our imaginations go off in strange and unexpected places just the same.

9 simple things you and your children can do to explore and better appreciate the smaller beauties of our natural world:

    1. Grab a magnifying glass (borrow from Nana or pick one up at the dollar store), then head outside for some bug exploration.

    2. Don’t stop at the grass… but have the kids get up close to moss, trees, weeds and mulch.

    3. Look for a pair of binoculars at a local flee market or the garage and have your children explore the world above their heads.

    4. Create a bingo game for outdoor exploration… instead of “calling an item” when the kids FIND an item they mark their card. Prizes could be flower seeds to plant or new gardening gloves. (Sample findings: beetle, spiderweb, feather)

    5. Look for tracks: frog prints, worm holes, ant hills… so many possibilities.

    6. Have the children journal their findings… either in writing or by sketching (Lewis and Clark recorded many plant and animal species with drawings as it is a great way of documenting findings).

    7. Go on a “rainy day” exploration. What differences do your children find in soil, bugs and other surroundings?

    8. Make leaf and other nature impressions. Just using paper and crayons, they can create a documented entry for their journal or a small piece of art

    9. Watch “Bugs! A Rainforest Adventure” documentary.

My favorite scene was during one of the battles when the bark of the tree came to life with tons of Boggins. They were perfectly camouflaged as the tree bark and the animation detail was just amazing. It was one of those moments where you stop to appreciate something so unnoticed – the detail put into this scene and the entire movie to get us to appreciate the detail of our world is amazing.

Posing with Chris Wedge, Director of Epic

I was fortunate enough to meet and interview with Chris Wedge, the Director of Blue Sky’s Epic. During this brief media interview, Chris described his intentions in creating Epic as “not just trying to entertain the kids with funny, colorful characters; I want to engage them in a story.” Click on this audio link to hear a bit more of Chris Wedge describing his inspirations in creating this film: Epic Interview with Chris Wedge

And more resources…

A fellow blogger, Tina Seitzinger wrote a great recap and review of this movie and you can check it out here.

The official Epic movie website has games, character insight, pictures and more. www.TheEpicMovie.com.

For more educational material, you MUST look at the resources available through Scholastic. Several downloads definitely worth exploring under the “Resources for Teachers”… these are not just for teachers – these are tools for us to use to get the most out of our movie ticket, materials to enhance the discussions and fun downloads to continue the learning fun AT HOME!! So play the Epic Adventure Challenge and print the Secret Forest word-find and then take advantage of the Epic Reading List (especially with summer break around the corner). So many options to take a great movie and make it an even greater experience.

Here are some pictures of our experience…

Via exploring our water saturated world.

Via exploring wet leaves.

Jumping Puddles

Disclosure: Although, I was invited to a media interview to meet with Chris Wedge, I was not compensated for this review, my travel or tickets. My daughter and I purchased our tickets and turned this into a weekend learning experience filled with fun and activities based on our interpretation of the movie. The opinions expressed herein are strictly

Puddles

mine, as are the suggestions for further exploration.

Via taking samples.

The Smell Of Rain

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