My nephew is in summer camp at his Montessori School and almost every day they go on a nature walk to see what seasonal discoveries mother nature is offering up.
(Photo credit: Ms. Danielle)
Keeping a group of 2 and 3 year olds together on a nature walk in the city is quite admirable and takes some creativity for sure.His brilliant teachers came up with the idea to have making nature bracelets a part of their walks and I had to share the idea with you!
It keeps the children engaged with nature while on the walk and also meets the (Montessori curricular) fundamental human need of aestheticism/art/adornment.
The bracelets also help initiate conversation with the children about the nature they see each day.
Of course they don’t say that to the children, but the way the children love the activity attests to the way the group taps into that need. Additionally, this activity gets the children observing their natural world, hunting out little whispers and treasures to add to their bracelets!
My nephew loves his so much he won’t let them be throw away!! This one is a couple weeks old and he is especially proud of the berry on the left.
The Nature Bracelet project is really flexible and is aimed at ages 2-9. Make bracelets while out on a walk, exploring in the school yard, or bring a bowl of dried flowers, leaves, herbs, and any other small light weight nature items you can gather indoors and offer it as an independent nature inspired art activity.
Wonder Wednesday #34: Nature Bracelets
1.5-2 inch wide masking tape, color of your choice.
For indoor bracelet making: a bowl or sorted bowls of nature items such as seeds, seed pods, flowers, herbs, leaves, grass, and any other interesting items in your area.
If you would like you can cut the tape ahead of time into 4 inch for toddlers and 6 inch for 4 years and up, although depending on the size of the child this could vary. These lengths give ample overlap room.
Decide on your nature walk route.
For indoor bracelet making, set up the work at a table and if desired, sort the different types of items into separate bowls or baskets from which the children can choose.
Explain to the children that they will each get a sticky bracelet that they can press found nature items onto to make a nature bracelet and piece of art. Explain the parameters of your specific walk, environment, and situation. Also explain what type of items are appropriate to stick, and what are not, if necessary.
With elementary children, you can reference the Montessori Fundamental Human Needs work and how people have collected items and found inspiration from nature for their art and physical adornment for ages. You could even show some art nouveau nature inspired jewelry if you like.
Wrap a length of tape – sticky side out – around each child’s wrist.
Head out on your walk and collect and create beautiful nature bracelets!
Once you return, the children can continue to wear the bracelets home, or cut them off and they become a little nature art piece. Mount onto card stock if you’d like to formalize the work.
Indoor bracelet making – model making the bracelets and offer the lesson at a table independently for children to create during the work cycle.
Have older children do field guide research on the items they collected or have them to history research and presentations on the ways different groups of humans have used nature to adorn themselves over time.
Share pics of your bracelets on Instagram #wingswormsandwonder
Seeds to Sprout:
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