When you’re on holidays, everything slows down and you take time to enjoy the simple things in life. Enjoying time in nature is on top of my simple life list and we’ve enjoyed plenty of that lately.
The most memorable so far was making nature boats. Every child should experience the achievement of making a boat made from natural materials and then watch it floating down a trickling river.
Why bother making nature boats?
- Nature boats are simple to make
- You only need a few materials
- There’s learning to be had (see the benefits below)
- It gets your children outside
- It’s something your children will always remember!
What about a creek?
I would highly recommend taking your boat to a running creek like we did. It really does make the experience magical but if you don’t have one near you, why not make your own by creating a ditch and putting a hose down it. They could also play with their nature boats in the bath!
How we made our nature boats
- big leaves
- seed pod
- glue gun
Using a glue gun, glue the stick to the seed pod. Punch two holes through the leaf, one at the top and one at the bottom (see image). Thread the leaf through the stick to make the sail. Decorate by punching a decorative hole through the sail (optional). We added the decorations so that we could tell whose boat was whose.
What your children can learn while making and playing with their boats in nature.
- They learn about parts of a boat. We talked about a boat’s mast, sail, bow and stern etc. What each do and how it keeps the boat floating and moving forward.
- Fine and Gross motor skills. Children firstly develop fine motor skills while making their boat, secondly they develop gross motor skills navigating down the creek beds and playing with their boats in the creek.
- Understanding creeks and water flow. We talked about creeks and why they run. Where all the water comes from and what might happen if the rain stopped.
- Nature is fun. This is really what matters to me. I want my children to connect with nature and this activity most certainly does that!
I hope I’ve convinced you make nature boats and go to a little creek to sail them. It really is an experience your children won’t ever forget. It saddens me to think that so many children haven’t had this experience in their young life. It really is the simple, active activities that bring real joy to the faces of your children. Get out there!