With the warm weather upon us and summertime around the corner, the great outdoors has begun to thrive, and so should we. Teaching children the importance of keeping our environment protected is essential because one day the future of our planet will be in their hands. Teaching children about the environment doesn’t have to be restricted to the classroom. Nature is all around us and your environmental education lessons can incorporate the great outdoors with indoor crafts and activities. TeacherBoards Community have pulled together lots of fun educational games for children that involve exploring playgrounds, parks and nature gardens for creative tools that you can use in the classroom.
Painting with Nature
As showcased below, painting with nature can quickly become a messy task. To avoid chaos in the classroom you can always opt for the old newspaper on the tables trick. Alternatively have this task set outdoors, preferably when the British summertime isn’t forsaking us with torrential downpours (but who are we kidding?). There are so many different painting tools you can find outdoors, such as pine cones, branches and twigs. You might want to remind the class that bugs and creatures shouldn’t be used as tools, you may end up with creations that are stranger than Lady Gaga’s meat dress.
Time to rock and roll with this brilliant and beautiful arts and crafts creation. This idea is so easy to do and your class will be able to create so many unique and beautiful designs. You can use these painted stones as a desk decoration, outdoor play, in the mud kitchen or to take home as a summer time gift for parents and carers. Dependent on your student’s artistic abilities, you can prep the stones before hand by picking out flatter surfaces and even priming them to help your paint dry and stay put.
Sticks and Stones
You may have found on previous school trips or outdoor strolls that many young children find happiness in competing with each other to find the biggest stick. Despite this becoming a major inconvenience for the student who manages to find the biggest stick, who then feels obligated to carry their victorious findings all the way home, you can use this mind set to your advantage. Another eco-themed art lesson could involve students exploring the playground to find the best twigs to use as a canvas. Once the sticks have had a good clean, you can being to paint pretty patterns and attach feathers, sequins and ribbons to create an eco wand. You can teach your class about the beauty of nature when you’re outside looking for your tools.
Handmade Bird Feeders
These handmade bird feeders are the perfect incentive for attracting wildlife to any nature gardens you might have in school, or are a brilliant present for children to take home. You could use this to teach your students about the importance of protecting nature and its wonderful wildlife. Habitats have different needs, supporting these environments by adding bird feeders and such, can help them flourish. There are different ways to make your bird feeders and you can find one example by clicking on the image below.
What you will need:
- Bird Seed
- Warm Water
- Cookie cutters
Upcycling activities seem to be the latest trend in the arts and crafts community. You and your class can become a part of this by using your recycling bin for artistic classroom resources. Not only will you be able to teach children about recycling, you will also be able to collect bags of learning resources for your classroom for free. Encouraging your students to recycle is an important life lesson for them to learn. Below are just some of the hundreds of ideas you can incorporate in the classroom with your recycled resources. Click here for a list of supplies that can be recycled and reused.
Bees are essential for our environment and are a specie that we must work towards protecting. They have an important role in the pollination process and without them we risk being unable to sustain the current global population of humans. You can read this recent study from the BBC about bees here. This crafts activity is sure to get students interested in the conservation of bees. This Bee Hotel activity is easy to make and fun to be apart of.
Sundeala Notice Boards are made from 100% recycled newspaper. Because of its eco-friendly materials, you can use this as a canvas for many different things. In previous instances, the Sundeala board has been used as a canvas for paintings, you can prime the board with a 50/50 solution of water and PVC glue and paint over it once it has dried. There are so many different ways you can use the Sundeala Notice boards in art lessons, whether its for creating big and beautiful group work displays, or as smaller size canvases to use as individuals paintings. If you’re looking for more innovative ways to use your Sundeala Board, click here for more inspirational ideas.