Flowers are beautiful! Rocks are cool! So beautiful and cool in fact, that most people see these and other natural objects and want to take them home! The BeeHive learned that by doing that, others cannot enjoy what they found on their adventures!
The focus for this Leave No Trace day was ‘Leave What You Find’! Students brainstormed different ways that you can see something interesting in nature and remember it forever! A few ideas were - take a picture, draw it or visit it again!
I used these ideas that they generated to do a few art based activities! Art played a huge role in the protection of natural lands out west during a time when people in the east were making decisions about places they've never visited or seen! After talking about influential artists, explorers and photographers, the BeeHive got to create their own works of art to show how beautiful our local state park is!
Just like Lewis and Clark on their westward adventures, the students had to find natural objects found along the beach to sketch in detail! I busted out some magnifying glasses and hand lenses to help aid in their observations! The objects were placed a few feet away for the first drawing and then observed with the magnifying glass up close.The older students had to label what they saw while the younger students were shown how to use these tools! Check out this website to find more sketches and journal pages from Lewis and Clark! https://lewisandclarkjournals.unl.edu/
After spending a wonderful hour or so on the beach, we headed back out on the trail to learn more about incorporating art into our science day! Students were given different Elements of Art cards and had to find those elements in the forest around them! One student told me "I never thought about art in nature! But I guess it is found everywhere, huh?"
The highlight of our day was finding a big ole garter snake in the grassy edge of the lake shore! This was the perfect teachable moment! Most of the students asked to hold it and look closer while others hung back but still asked questions! It was so neat to see how the older students helped the younger students hold the snake and tell them the different facts they knew about snakes. This was such a great reminder about teaching! Kids are naturally curious and observant. Instead of forcing lessons...teach what they are interested in!
If you are interested in my Elements of Art in Nature lesson or my Lewis and Clark adventure lesson for your students at home or school contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org!