An easy nature activity for inside

window drawing

We here in New England have a saying about the weather: If you don’t like it, wait a minute.

Really, it can seem to change that quickly.  For example, yesterday was a beautiful sunny day in the upper 70’s.  Today is gray and barely reaching 50 degrees.  There was no easing into it.  My kids and I are much more interested in wrapping up in blankets and drinking hot cocoa right now than we are in heading outside to explore.  Do you ever have days like that?

There are ways that, even when you decide to stay indoors for whatever reason, you can still explore nature.  Today I was inspired by this sweet book – Inside Outside.

This book follows a child through the seasons and we can see that the child’s indoor activities are inspired by the nature outside.  I loved the perspectives provided by the small cutouts, giving just a glimpse of the adventures taking place outside.  When you turn the page the full scene is revealed.  Here’s how we interpreted this concept to have our own outside adventures while indoors:

window drawing collage

Each child had their own cutout frame that we taped on to a window.  They stood back about an arm’s length away and took notice of what they could see outside just within the frame.  It helps to ask your child questions to get them noticing some details.  For example

  • What plants do you notice? Are there trees?  Bushes?  Flowers?  A garden?
  • Are there any trees?  What type of tree is it?  Are the leaves changing color?
  • Do you see any animals or insects?  Where are they and what are they doing?
  • Can you see the sky?  What’s the weather like?  Are there clouds?  Rain?  Wind?

Now comes the fun part!  Let your child trace what they see within their frame right on to the window.  We found that wet-erase markers (like Vis-a-Vis) or wipe-off crayons worked best.  My children also found it easier to close one eye while they were tracing.  For young children, like my youngest who is 5, it’s best to keep the opening within your frame small so that they do not get overwhelmed.

My children enjoyed taking notice of how much nature could be found in such a small area, not to mention being able to draw on our windows.  I hope your children will enjoy it as well!

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