“The world is so full of a number of things,
I’m sure we should all be as happy as kings.”
Robert Louis Stevenson captures the essence of childhood in this short verse. With a keen awareness of their environment, including an eye for detail, many children take in what adults often tune out. Once struck by the joy, they are self-motivated to discover more.
Now that the winter is bowing out to fairer weather, perhaps we can join in our children’s discoveries in welcoming spring. Here are some activities which promote springtime observation for the little ones in the family.
Bring in early shoots of pussy willow, forsythia, or other flowering fruit trees to open in the house. See if your youngster can discover what makes the shoots open indoors faster than if they stayed outdoors. This can lead on to other questions such as what do plants need besides warm temperatures?
Take frequent walks, whether in the woods, a park, or just around the block, to observe the subtle changes in nature. What plants and trees are among the first to bloom in spring? As the new leaves appear, learn to identify the telltale shape of the maple, oak, willow, sweet gum, etc. (depending on your location). If you find a cut tree stump, your child can discover how many years old the tree was when it was cut down by counting the circular rings on it. [Read more…] about Children’s Springtime of Discovery