Winter Fun Activities

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Looking for some ways to unplug after spending these winter days cooped up inside? Here are some ideas for outdoor activities that the whole family can enjoy!

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Create a nature themed scavenger hunt. Look for footprints in the snow, icicles, pinecones, nuts, moss or other unique items that are more visible during the winter.  See how long it takes to find 15 or 20 nature items during your scavenger hunt in the winter landscape.

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Go on a winter hike.
 Even though its winter, there is still alot to see.  Trees have unique patterns in their bark that can help identify them after their leaves have fallen.  Squirrels, birds, nests, galls are examples of interesting winter sights that can be seen more easily without the leaf cover.  Count how many unique trees, animal species, or nests that you can identify during your hike. 

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Make or hang a bird feeder and observe the different birds that stop by.
 Count the number of species that visit your feeder and learn a few more species names using a field guide to birds. Or participate as a citizen scientist in the Christmas Bird Count nearest you between Friday, December 14, 2018 and Saturday, January 5, 2019.

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Build a snowman in the shape of your favorite animal.
 Have you ever made a snow turtle, a snow snake, snow fish, or a snow frog?  Be creative as you shape the snow in new ways.  Use natural objects such as pinecones, leaves, twigs, moss, or pebbles that you find to decorate your snow animal, creating textures that serve as your animal's scales, fins, eyes, nose and more.

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Try to catch snowflakes and observe the different shapes.
No two snowflakes are the same shape. Take out a magnifying glass and compare the different shapes, sizes, and forms.  Sketch your favorite snowflakes in your nature journal or sketch pad.

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See how many different animal footprints you can find in the snow.
 Did you know that you can determine which animals live in an area by the prints the leave as they walk?  Learn to identify a few animal species by observing their prints in the snow or mud.  Use an animal tracking guide from your library or the internet to discover who lives near you.

 

If you try any of these activities, take a picture and then share it with us on Facebook @ChildrenofIndianaNaturePark. Tell us how your family enjoyed the activities.