When supporting a child’s primary school science studies at home,just as in school, parents may notice peaks and lows in motivation and creativity. This should not always be a matter for concern. The thing to do is to put down books and pens, open the door and step outside into the fresh air of the natural world that surrounds us. In other words, the simple act of taking a walk can spark creativity and engender fresh curiosity leading to a wealth of new learning. Children may even rush home to look up a curious new plant they have found, or to research a brightly-colored bird they have never seen before.
It is not the sole preserve of country-dwellers either. Under supervision, a town park holds a surprising wealth of wildlife, as does a lake, reservoir, zoo or beach. Even the back-yard can yield mini-beasts or insects.
Here is a grab-bag with contents list to hang on a peg near the door ready to take at a moment’s notice, if and when the mood should strike :
Plastic bag containing:
1. Other plastic bags for specimen collecting!
2. A powerful magnifying glass.
3. A couple of bug boxes
4. Small First Aid tin for bites and stings
5. Pocket Field Guide for identification
6 Mini Binoculars
7. Notebook and some sharp pencils with erasers for diagrams and details
8. A small net for temporary View-and-set-free observation
Learner’s Block should soon vanish and Scientific questioning and thought should replace it in jaded tired minds. When students have reached a mental block, there is nothing to be lost from ‘get-up-and-go.’ Parents are their chidrens best resource in guiding them in the free activity. Children can take the lead and enquire into whatever interests them in this most perennial and valuable of Scientific Enquiry – The Nature Walk!