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  • Writer's pictureJennifer Baker

Kids Fall Outdoor Activity: Goodbye Hibernation, Hello Recreation

Updated: Nov 16, 2023

Fall in a forest with cartoon kids hiking

As summer inevitably gives way to fall, school routines provide a much-needed break to busy parents. Seeing your wild child off on that first day is a mixture of emotions, and as they walk into the school, you wipe away a tear, breathe a sigh (of relief?), and think, my year of rest and relaxation is finally here! Except it’s not.

As the cooler temperatures settle in and sweet dreams of hunkering down for hibernation take root, parents everywhere reawaken to the knowledge that kids never rest nor relax! So, I apologize, but it’s time to say goodbye to hibernation and hello to outdoor recreation. Fortunately, there is a lot of beauty to take in during fall outdoor activities with kids.

I hear you:

“But it’s cold!”

“I don’t know what to do.”

“My kids think it’s boring outside.”

Unfortunately, I can’t control the weather, but I can help you with the last two. Fall just happens to be my favorite time of the year. Yes, the light fades faster, but the autumn colors are bright and bold. And I love hiking! There are so many walking trails near me. In fact, I am pretty positive there are probably some great nature trails near you also.

Girl walking along nature trail with wetland and mountains in the distance.
Hiking With my Daughter Near Invermere, BC

Nature Walks—The Perfect Fall Outdoor Activity With Kids

Nature walks are the perfect fall outdoor activity for the whole family. There are hiking trails to be found for every level, from the tiniest wild child to the wild child teen—due to their unpredictability, approach the juvenile wild child with caution. All jokes aside, you don’t need to conquer the West Coast Trail right off the hop. A local park will do just fine!

So, we have the recreation part—a nature walk to take in the fresh fall air— covered. Now, let’s discuss the “boring” complaint. Like you, I hear it too! My kids would rather watch Bluey than bundle up to head outside. But! It’s time to replace screen time with green time, and that’s the exact reason why I created A Walk in Nature Journal: Recordings of a Wild Child.

And, because this year, we, as parents, are collectively saying goodbye to hibernation, you no longer have to wait until spring to get the most out of this nature walk journal for kids.

It’s hard to be bored when you are taking a walk on the wild side! This journal is a great way to add exploration and adventure to your next “boring” family nature walk. Full of quotes, facts, writing prompts, and plenty of room to record sketches, field notes, and species observations, this journal, containing over 100 pages, is designed to get the imagination flowing.

Cover image of A Walk in Nature Journal - Boy and girl looking at butterflies in a forest.

I created A Walk in Nature Journal: Recordings of a Wild Child for children aged 6-12. But! A wild child exists in us all, regardless of age. So consider this a loose recommendation.

The Spec Sheet:

Printed with black and white ink on 55lb paper, this 8.5" x 11" perfect-bound journal is best paired with pencils, crayons, and pencil crayons. Markers and paint will bleed through the pages. Although markers create smooth lines, they do not allow for shading and layering like other materials. Children can further deepen the rich, multi-sensory experience of being outdoors in nature by using pencils and crayons.

And, because nature nurtures children from all backgrounds, your wild child can record observations from 20 different walks on pages that are both engaging and full of graphics that highlight the inclusivity of the outdoors.

With this journal, the structure of each walk remains the same, repeating over 4-pages. There is a page to record the date, location, weather, and general observations (I see, smell, hear, and feel). As well as pages to sketch, make field notes, and record a story about the walk. Each walk also features quotes, a multiple-choice question, and a writing prompt to encourage extended learning.

Additional pages include:

• A letter to children, parents, and educators. • A place to record the name of the journal's owner. • A supply list.

• Tips on wildlife safety. • And species observation logs for mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, insects, and plants.

Ultimately, this journal is so much more than a workbook. It's a tool to establish strong connections to nature and each other. It's an investment into what matters most—the health of your wild child! And, you truly are paying it forward with this journal in that stewardship principles that protect the long-term health of the environment are passed along to a new generation. Look at you go. Instead of hibernating, you’re raising a wild child and protecting the environment like a boss!

Grizzly Bear sleeping in a meadow while sitting up.

A Walk In Nature Journal Add On

Now, if talk of snow has you crawling back inside your cave, skip over this next part. I wanted to mention a great resource that pairs wonderfully with this journal. Animal Tracks & Traces Field Nature Guide provides a beautiful simplified field reference to the tracks, signs, and scat of over 65 familiar North American species. It features a ruler and is laminated to provide weather resistance. Great news because this journal, busting at the seams with fall outdoor activities for kids, will take you well into winter! But only if you say goodbye to hibernation and hello to outdoor recreation.

So, what are you waiting for? Go wild, get outside, and record your nature observations!

For kid’s books that nurture a connection to nature, visit Wild Child Literacy today and learn more about their upcoming titles. And! Don't forget to subscribe to the Wild Child Literacy newsletter to stay in the know. As a thank you, you'll receive a digital download of a nature walk straight from A Walk in Nature Journal!

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