March 12, 2015

Some evenings are perfect for getting outside and exploring. We found this great article on Go explore nature about a range of modes to get outside and explore nature at night – something most of us rarely get time to do.

First we reveal a few tips for exploring nature at night with kids:

  • Keep it short and simple. Since our kids are usually low on energy at the end of the day, we try to keep our night time exploring shorter than daytime activities.
  • Dress for the weather. Even though daytime temperatures may be high, nights get cool fast, so be prepared with jackets and hats if needed.
  • Be safe! Reflective clothing, glow sticks and/or flashlights are also important to help make sure others can see you out there!
  1. Gaze at the night sky.
    Choose a clear night when the moon isn’t full and head outside to watch the stars come out. Look for constellations and planets too.
  2. Attend an event at a local nature park.
    Check your local parks and nature reserves for family friendly evening programs such as cinema under the stars etc.
  3. Go for a walk with your torch.
    Mix up the usual walk around the neighbourhood by waiting until the sun goes down and going with your torch. What kinds of things can you discover at night that you don’t see during the day?
  4. Play the listening game.
    What does the night sound like? Play the listening game and find out! Here’s how we play: I tell The Explorers that I’m going to count to 20 in my head while they close their eyes and just listen – no talking. When time’s up, they can tell me everything they heard. Then we’ll swap and they count while I listen.
  5. Search for night time critters.
    Your kids might already be familiar with the animals they see around your neighbourhood during the day. But what happens at night? See how many unique animals you can find. Look for spiders, owls, moths and more.
  6. Camp out!
    Whether you camp out in your own backyard or spend a night or two at one of Watagan’s campsites, sleeping in a tent is one of the best ways to commune with night-time nature.
  7. Light a backyard campfire.
    About all you need for a successful backyard campfire is a fire pit, some wood to burn, and the family. Don’t forget to check the local fire restrictions.
  8. Host a backyard movie night.
    If you’ve got access to a digital projector and a DVD player, host a backyard movie night. Choose a family friendly nature-themed film – and don’t forget the popcorn!
  9. Create your own night-time scavenger hunt.
    Make a list of things you think you might find on a short walk through your neighbourhood at night. Then head outside and see how many you can find.
  10. Watch a sunset.
    Any place right outside your front or back yard will do. But if you happen to have some extra time, consider picking a special spot at one of Watagan’s lookouts to watch a sunset.

Live outside the box at Watagan Park

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