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Nature Walk for Kids (+ FREE Scavenger Hunt Printable)

by Jean Van't Hul
September 1, 2022

Going on a nature walk for kids? Here some fun ideas to do on the nature walk and some to do after the walk. Plus, a FREE printable nature scavenger hunt!

Updated September 2022

So, you’re heading out on a nature walk with the kids and you want some ideas for adding a little extra fun, interaction, or education to the experience? 

Here are 6 activities you can do with kids during the nature walk. And another 7 that you can do with kids after arriving back home.

nature walk activities pinterest
Photo by Andrea Martelle

Activities While on a Nature Walk for Kids

These ideas include ways to learn about, explore, and engage with the natural world around you, including a scavenger hunt, sound hunt, “I spy” game, and more.

By the way, we’re not suggesting you have to do all of these activities. Pick one of the nature walk activities that interests you and the kids for this walk and save the others for future walks.

nature walk printable
Photo by Rachel Withers

Click on the image above or link below to save a copy of our nature scavenger hunt!

1. Go on a nature scavenger hunt (FREE Printable!)

A nature scavenger hunt gets kids outside to learn, have fun, and observe the nature world.

More nature scavenger hunt ideas:

  • Create your own nature scavenger hunt specifically for your area (desert, tropical beach, prairie) or season (spring, summer, fall, winter).
  • Do a color matching scavenger hunt. Bring paint chips and find nature items to match them.
  • Wing it and say something like, “how many kinds of flowers can you find?”
Photo by Rachel Withers

2. Take binoculars or a magnifying glass on a walk

Bring binoculars and a pocket bird guide and see what birds you can find. Or bring a magnifying glass or loupe and look at small things (insects, seedheads, flowers, etc) up close.

Photo by Jean Van’t Hul

3. Play “I Spy”, describing the nature around you

Kids love games! Add some excitement to your nature walk by taking turns playing “I spy…”.

“I spy with my little eye, something that is blue”

(or fluffy, green, round, wet, has six legs, rhymes with free, etc).

child with leaf rubbings
Photo by Rachel Withers

4. Bring paper and a peeled crayon to do leaf or bark rubbings

This is a fun art activity to try on the go! Kids can create bark rubbings with paper & crayons or oil pastels. Take it a step further and look up each tree to label the bark rubbings.

To extend this activity, gather some leaves to take home for leaf rubbings (which are best done on a table).

sound hunt
Photo by Jean Van’t Hul

5. Go on a sound hunt

Do you have a child who loves to make noise? Consider going on a sound hunt! Helping kids learn how to listen with intent and experiment with their own sound making is really engaging for all ages.

flowers in box
Photo by Andrea Martelle

6. Gather nature materials

Bring a bag, box, or basket and gather nature treasures such as flowers, leaves, seedpods, feathers, rocks, and more to use in one of the following activities. Find items in all the colors of the rainbow if you want to do the “mix and paint a rainbow” activity below.

nature walk activities pin

Activities To Do After a Nature Walk for Kids

flower petal suncatcher
Photo by Andrea Martelle

1. Make a nature suncatcher

One of our favorite suncatchers to create is the paper plate flower suncatcher using contact paper, flower petals and leaves.

Take it a step further and create a magical 3D nature suncatcher! Cut out windows in a box, cover with contact paper, then press the flower petals and leaves to the sticky plastic. Kids will love this project!

nature table resized (1)
Photo by Jean Van’t Hul

2. Set up a seasonal nature table

Gather flowers, plant cuttings, sticks, pinecones, feathers, rocks, and the like! Arrange in baskets at a kids table with magnifying glass and nature guides for further exploration.

Or combine with play silks, figurines, and toys to create a seasonal play scene.

Mix & Paint a rainbow from nature.
Photo by Jean Van’t Hul

3. Mix and paint a rainbow

First, mix your own paint colors to match the nature items that you found. Then paint a picture with them. You can combine this activity with observational drawing and paint your versions of the items you found.

You can also use your newly mixed colors to make an actual rainbow! Or to create any artwork you like, abstract or realistic.

Painted leaf, pinecone adn piece of wood and paper for nature diorama
Photo by Keira Gladstone

4. Make a Nature Diorama

Gather nature items such as pinecones, leaves, and seed pods on your nature walk. Then paint and assemble these materials into a small box in this simple nature diorama project for kids.

nature mobile
Photo by Abbey Donald

5. Make a nature mobile with found materials and DIY beads

Gather natural materials to use for this beautiful nature mobile. Paint some air dry clay beads and string materials together to create a nature mobile for kids.

Observational Drawing for Kids - Drawing Flowers from Life
Photo by Jean Van’t Hul

6. Do some observational drawing with your nature treasures

Kids can draw their nature treasures using oil pastels & chalk pastels, crayons, colored pencils, markers or tempera paint sticks. This is a simple drawing invitation that builds drawing skills through observing color, patterns, lines, and more!

You can also create special little shadow boxes, combining observational drawing with the real nature items, such as with this Feather Art in a Box.

Painted Clay Leaf Prints
Photo by Jean Van’t Hul

7. Make clay nature prints

Press leaves or flowers into air dry clay to make nature prints. Poke holes in the clay and let dry. The hang as ornaments or pendants! Or glue magnets onto the backs for use on the fridge.

How about you? Do you have any more nature walk activities for kids to add to this list?

More Nature Art Ideas for Kids

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Nature Walk for Kids (+ FREE Scavenger Hunt Printable)

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