{Wild Challenge} Trees, Leaves & Seeds

Autumn seemed like the perfect time to tick off the Trees, Leaves & Seeds activity from the RSPB Wild Challenge as hunting for autumn leaves and seeds is a family favourite which we do every year.

We kicked things off in early autumn by collecting conkers and as the season progressed we found acorns, beech nuts, chestnuts and sycamore seeds too. All of which got recorded in their nature journals and put on display in our home.

We also collected leaves, identified them with our tree guides and then got crafty with them!

And then to finish things off we each picked out a tree in the park to return to and study throughout the year so as to record the seasonal changes.

Here is the photo evidence:

Have you been enjoying all the autumn leaves and seeds?

{Wild Challenge} Wild Camp Out!

The Open Home 1524

The girls completed another experience nature activity as part of their RSPB Wild Challenge. We actually did this one back in the summer, I’m just slow getting up on the blog!

We decided to have a wild camp out in our very own back garden, setting up camp in the afternoon, enjoying a barbecue together in the evening, followed by s’mores and a few camp fire stories as the sun set and then a spot of bat watching.

It was a real hit!

Unfortunately the girls missed the one and only bat I saw before having to go to sleep as they were quickly fading, but we promised to take them on another bat (and owl) hunt on another night.

Here is the photo evidence:

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When was the last time you went camping?

{Wild Challenge} Wild Flower Foray

Wild Challenge | Wild Flower Foray | The Open Home

The girls have completed the Wild Flower Foray challenge as part of their bronze award with the RSPB Wild Challenge.

We visited Bluebell Woods and the orchid fields near L’eree and also completed 3 nature walks in different locations of the island; one by the sea, one on the cliffs and one in the countryside to see where had the most flowers. It was a close call and I thought the cliffs would win out but it was in fact the countryside that had the most wild flowers in the end with an impressive 27 different blooms spotted!

Here is the photo evidence:

Wild Challenge | Wild Flower Foray | The Open HomeWild Challenge | Wild Flower Foray | The Open HomeWild Challenge | Wild Flower Foray | The Open HomeWild Challenge | Wild Flower Foray | The Open HomeWild Challenge | Wild Flower Foray | The Open Home

Wild Challenge | Wild Flower Foray | The Open Home

Our favourite wild flowers are fox gloves, daisies, sea pinks and primroses.

What are your favourite wild flowers?

{Wild Challenge} Feed the Birds

Wild Challenge | Feed the Birds | The Open Home

The girls have ticked off their first help nature activity as part of their RSPB Wild Challenge bronze award, meaning we’re now half way to achieving it! This time they got their hands sticky in an attempt to feed the birds.

We stocked up on nuts, bird seed, suet bites and meal worms and mixed it all together with some grated cheese, raisins and lard. We were able to create 7 yogurt pot sized bird feeders for hanging around the garden as well as a bird food cake to put in our ground feeder.

Our resident robin in particular is especially appreciating their efforts and the girls feel pleased they are helping nature right in their own back yard.

Here is the photo evidence:

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When was the last time you fed the birds?

{Wild Challenge} Bird Watching

RSPB Wild Challenge | Bird Watching | The Open Home

The girls have ticked off another experience nature activity as part of their RSPB Wild Challenge bronze award, this time by going bird watching. They made use of a break in the rainy weather a couple of weeks back and embarked on a Daddy expedition to the bird hides by vale pond taking with them their nature supplies complete with binoculars, camera, field guide, clipboards and of course, those all important snacks.

They managed to spot snipes and coots, herring gulls and ducks, great tits and pigeons, a robin, blackbird and plenty of crows.

Here is the photo evidence:

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When was the last time you went birdwatching?

{Wild Challenge} Signs of Spring

RSPB Wild Challenge | Signs of Spring | The Open Home

This year we’ve decided to take on the RSPB Wild Challenge as a family and we’re currently working towards our Bronze Award. For each award you need to complete three “Experience Nature” activities and three “Help Nature” activities. We started with an experience nature activity looking for signs of spring in our beloved weekly nature spot, Candie Gardens.

We spied new buds, admired spring bulbs, sniffed sweet blossoms, counted petals, compared leaves, listened to bird song and hunted for bugs and frogs.

Here’s our photo evidence:

RSPB Wild Challenge | Signs of Spring | The Open HomeThe Open Home 1421The Open Home 1422The Open Home 1423The Open Home 1426The Open Home 1427RSPB Wild Challenge | Signs of Spring | The Open HomeThe Open Home 1429The Open Home 1430RSPB Wild Challenge | Signs of Spring | The Open HomeThe Open Home 1428RSPB Wild Challenge | Signs of Spring | The Open HomeThe Open Home 1431RSPB Wild Challenge | Signs of Spring | The Open HomeRSPB Wild Challenge | Signs of Spring | The Open Home

 

What are your favourite signs of spring?

 

 

{Autumn Nature Study}

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home

“Why be indoors when you can rightly be without.” – Charlotte Mason

The autumn started with such promise, our conker hoard was large this year, but October proved to be the wettest October for many a decade and the rain persisted well into autumn making nature walks increasingly difficult.

We still gathered and explored where we could and diligently kept an eye on our beloved ginkgo tree to be sure not to miss it in all its autumn glory.

We learnt a lot about seasonal weather and bird migration this autumn and have also signed up to the RSPB Wild Challenge and are looking forward to working towards our bronze award in the new year.

Here are some of the snapshots:

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Golden sunshine on our first conker hunt of the season.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Sensory fun!

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Bubbles’ first nature journal entry.

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The return of welly boot season.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Autumn nature walks in Cumbria.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Nature walk at Derwent Water, the home of Squirrel Nutkin.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Gruffalo spotting and squirrel hunting on our way up Orrest Head.

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A successful climb to the top of Orrest Head.

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Rambling in the Lake District.

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Wild and Free.

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Fabulous fungi.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Rock climbing our way to Rydal Cave.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Exploring Rydal Cave.

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Autumn views at Rydal Water.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Autumn crafts.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Nature walks with our fellow Nature Explorers.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Blossom’s bird migration work.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
Ginkgo magic.

Autumn Nature Study 2019 | The Open Home
The simple joy of autumn leaves!

 

What did you enjoy most about nature this (wet and windy) Autumn?