Climate Change Emergency - There is no Planet B!
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Play is one of the main ways in which children develop and learn. Through play, children learn about themselves and the world around them. To encourage families, child carers, playworkers and education groups to make the most of the Wales’ best playground – our wonderful, natural environment, we’ve compiled some activity ideas, tips and tricks to help keep children engaged and build their connection to nature.
Whether you are visiting your local park, beach or taking a walk through a local woodland, exploring nature is a great way for children to exercise their bodies and minds. The natural environment offers the opportunity to engage in a variety of fun, simple activities regardless of age, fitness level or gender, so why not try some of our activity suggestions with your children.
Download our Nature Fun and Play Booklet for ideas and suggestions.
Our Education, learning and play YouTube playlist offers a range of a short how-to videos to provide inspiration for some outdoor adventures:
Building a wormery
Check out our Getting Creative Outdoors booklet for ideas. From creating natural mandalas to making a peg butterfly, with 26 activity ideas there’s something for everyone.
Download our Getting Creative Outdoors Booklet to help inspire your children’s creativity when your out in the natural environment.
For activity 15 you will need a couple of supporting resources. Remember to take them with you to help make shelter building fun for all the family.
Activity 15 - Shelters and dens (information note)
Activity 15 - Creative shelter challenge (resource cards)
Using their senses to explore the natural environment allows children to learn about the world around them and themselves. From using their sense of smell to create natural scents, to looking at the natural environment from a new perspective during a canopy walk, these interactive activities and games are guaranteed to stimulate exploration and discovery.
Download our Natural Senses Booklet and take the ideas out and about with you.
Some of the activities need some supporting information and resources:
Activity 7: Tickly prickly - (resource cards)
Activity 8: Animal snap – (resource cards)
Activity 14: Scavenger hunt coastal – (resource cards)
Activity 14: Scavenger hunt land – (resource cards)
Find out about what our friend Heti, thinks about a favourite story in this short film.
It might inspire you and your children to get outside!
Or alternatively, why not branch out into books with our trees and woodlands booklist?
Branching out into books – (booklist)
Explore our woodlands, nature reserves, trails and open access land. Our places to visit webpages allow you to search by places to go or activities to do.
Before heading out, check out our tips and tricks for a safe and happy play session with your children:
Check out our play poster for information on the multiple benefits to health, wellbeing and learning, of playing in natural spaces. Our other posters on connecting to nature, physical activity and wellbeing are available on our Outdoor learning research page.
Did you know that children have a legal, human right to play? The Welsh Government has led the way in promoting children’s right to play. If you want to find out more about play, Play Wales has lots of great resources and information.
We believe that it is every child’s right to grow up and live in a healthy and sustainably managed natural environment. Our Children’s Rights Charter shows how we will uphold and promote children’s rights in our work and deliver better services for children and young people in Wales. Find out more about the children’s rights approach from the Children’s Commissioner for Wales.