I’m always looking for ways to get my kids outside to get in their 60 minutes a day, also known as a “Green Hour” by the National Wildlife Federation. So, to get them outside, I asked them to search for the green signs of spring.
Last week, I let each kid use a digital camera to photograph signs of spring and get them walking outside and noticing nature. (6 year old, JJ, used a point and shoot while 9 year old, AJ, got to use my old SLR. As I’ve mentioned before, don’t bother with the kid cameras, they’re terrible!)
For younger children, download a spring scavenger hunt and read aloud spring books.
Teach Kids Photography
I had to laugh because AJ refused to participate saying, “I’m not going, it’s too cold.” When JJ and I left to explore the back yard, AJ followed us and announced, “I’m just going for a minute but only in the back yard. I am not going on the path.” When JJ and I jumped the fence and started exploring the path and surrounding green space, AJ soon followed despite her earlier proclamation. Before long, AJ was running ahead, shouting, “Come on, follow me!”
Truly, kids like AJ require more patience. I always remind myself that I must gently encourage and participate with the girls when we do activities. At least to get them started.
As we walked through the green space, I introduced some new photography concepts like close up, zoom in, and landscape.
Then, for JJ, I tried to make sure she stood still when taking photos. That didn’t always happen but, no biggie since she’s using a digital camera. Delete!
Capturing Signs of Spring With Cameras
We enjoyed our time outside and even got some beautiful photos. Spring is barely here but we found a few little green plants here and there.
I helped the kids look down and look up. Signs of new growth were everywhere.
ADD WRITING: I used iPhoto to make a photo book, saved it as a .pdf, and printed it out on plain paper for the girls to write captions and descriptions for each photo.
We got out side — a green hour — by discovered signs of spring and had a blast!
How do you get outside in the spring?
Here are some activity ideas from the NWF for your Green Hour.
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