Throwing your kids in the mud to make them smarter?
Forget sensory bins. They only provide input to your child’s hands. They will make a mess. Your kids may play for 5 minutes and get bored. They can be time consuming and expensive to put together. (Angela J. Hanscom)
Try a full immersion sensory experience instead!
At the end of a rainy day, we hiked over to a mountain biking trail. There is a 10 foot drop for bikers. Because it was rainy, it was deserted.
We turned it into a mudslide!
The kids had a blast throwing themselves down the muddy hill. Making mud pies. Rolling down the hill. We lost some boots. Kids used every ounce of their energy going up and down this hill.
We returned home with about an extra 30 lbs of extra mud on each kid.
This is the last day to complete our Winter challenge!
Post below that you have completed the whole challenge, what were the best and worst moments? Leave your email address and I will send you a link to a short video of some highlights of our spring break.
Coyote information to keep your kids safe when hiking or playing in the forest
Enjoying nature with your little ones can be wonderful. Worrying they are going to be eaten by a coyote, not so wonderful.
How do you keep your kids from being a bite-sized coyote snack?
First, here is a short video on what is called Coyote Hazing, produced by our town.
We tend to stick to the same general area to play in the forest. This allows the kids to leave bigger projects like building shelters or obstacles courses or bridges they can come back to another day. In our familiar area of the forest we have never seen a coyote. However, a mountain biker we see a few times a week, told me that another hiker had been surrounded by a few coyotes just up the trail from where we go. Scary!
So we have taken a few steps to make sure the kids learn how to deal with coyotes.
We have practiced putting your hands way over your head, (with a big stick is extra points) and yelling “GO AWAY!”
We have played coyote many times, with the above, and making sure no one turns and runs, because apparently that can encourage coyotes to chase you.
The two older kids, who occasionally go a little further than the younger kids, have very loud whistles.
I have an air horn, which should scare off most animals.
We are double checking any new areas we play in for brush or little shelters that could be used as coyote dens.
Has anyone come across a coyote in Oakville or otherwise?
This recent sighting makes me a little extra cautious, but it won’t stop us from enjoying the outdoors, and it seems to add to the adventure. The kids are even enjoying our new “Coyote” game and have added it to their rotation.
The days are still cold, but we are getting stronger and more resilient by enjoying the fresh air. Join us by doing this checklist:
1. Find treasures under a log… hopefully some cool bugs and plants. Don’t forget to put it back to how you have found it.
2. Look for mushrooms. Collect a small variety to learn what they are when you get home. We usually carry a box with us to put in interesting discoveries.
3. Make a simple bird feeder to help the birds make it through the winter. Belle made a simple one. She spread peanut butter on a stick and sprinkled bird seed on the peanut butter. Then she put the stick as high as she could get it on a tree.
We came back the next day to see if birds had come to eat the seeds, but it was gone. There was a lot of curiosity about whether a coyote had eaten the stick.
4. Find a bug. We were gifted an amazing magnifying glass. The kids have been enjoying checking out a variety of items with the magnifying glass. Hands and fingers have been a favourite. We are hoping to find a dead spider or bee to learn about the physical characteristics.
5. Climb a tree. This is a challenge for us. Our little neck of the woods is quite dense so the branches start quite high. We have a decent climbing tree out front, but we will keep looking for one in the forest.
Post or msg me if you want to join in. Complete the whole challenge, post about it and you can have a private sneak peak at how we spent our Spring break. You may get some ideas.