Links to Natural Play Resources
You may find the following educational resources helpful.
- Activities for young children: confusing website, but good listing of over 3400 activities to do with young children, many of which relate to nature and the seasons.
art for the garden: very graceful birds of PVC :( ...but nice!
- Bench Swing: Free Standing Arbor Swing: Step-
by-step, do-it-yourself guide. For other project guides, use the "Search", top left.
- Children's Play in Natural Environments: A fact Sheet
Children's landscapes in Norway
Children, Youth, & Environments
- Children & Nature Network: its goal: establishing a global community of people and organizations committed
to working together to reconnect children with nature
Developmentally Appropriate Gardening for Young
Children by Vicki Stoecklin
- Developing Adventure Playgrounds
Early Childhood Care and Education Resources
EIC: Using the
Environment as an Integrating Context (EIC) for Learning; EIC is an
education model that employs natural and community surroundings as
the context for learning while taking into account best
practices in education.
- Earth-Friendly clothes for kids
- Globe Project: Uses a worldwide community of students, teachers, scientists, and citizens working together to better understand, sustain, and improve Earth's environment at local, regional, and global scales. Friendly website.
- Environmental art: great UK site showing children creating natural art following Andy Goldsworthy's ideas. Make sure to follow the link at page bottom.
- Fast Growing Trees:
Great site for people who want well-established natural playgrounds
in a hurry!
- Fast plants: fast-growing plants for research and education purposes, vetted by the University of Wisconsin
- Fencing: Unobtrusive,
do-it-yourself fencing that is just the thing for child care centers
wanting to avoid unattractive chain link fences.
- Ground Covers: Great little brochure about ground covers:
a plant list and info about where to plant, foot traffic tolerance,
speed of growth, and growing conditions
- Gardening ideas for kids: A comprehensive list of web resources for gardening with children"
Community Gardening for people of all ages, abilities and
Grass (self-replicating!!!), an answer to
Pages (same as Yellow Pages, but about "green"
- Greening Schools - Students excited about their Natural Playground may broaden their interests to other sustainable School projects and check out this website.
Green Street: fascinating Canadian Site; well done!
- Herb Gardens: Starting a garden for kids, growing, ideas, resources. Nice site.
- Hidden Harvest: This award-
winning, non-profit group teaches gardening in low income areas!
Invasive Plants: National Park Service, Invasipedia
Interactive sculptural environments
Learning through landscapes
- Maintenance Guide for Natural Playgrounds
- Math in nature: Math lessons for natural playgrounds. Make sure to follow links at page bottom.
moss gardens; see also bigdipper
Musical Instruments: make your own:Here and Here
- Nature Kindergarten: a look at Scotland's first nature
kindergarten, with recommendations,study guides on using an outdoor
Natural gardening/landscaping materials: willow
fences, etc., and then look through the outdoor gardening menu on
Stabilization: DirtGlue stabilizes soil to make natural-looking
Playground Physics (and other resources) introduction
to basic concepts in classical mechanics for upper elementary and
middle school grades (4-7) relating the experience children have on
the playground to basic physics concepts. Some refit req'd to
use items that are all natural.
- Poisonous plants:
Searchable Data Bases: Colorado State University
Put up posts without digging holes! SeePin foundations!
- Play Naturally: A review of Children's Natural Play
Rare plants in US
RoSPA British site discussing playground safety in a
more generous, common-sense way than here in the US.
- Sandpits: a fun account of how a large sandpit
developed, with helpful hints
- Shade Planting
Societies: a comprehensive list of plant, garden,
& related societies
- Sustainable Horticulture: UNH's Growing a Green Generation horticulture curriculum for pre-school to kindergarten age children
- Training in Natural Play: outdoor play training courses
at the University of Gloucestershire may be a bit of a stretch, but
at least it's being done!
Trees for kids: all about trees; fun, interactive
Houses: fun, one-of-a-kind, universally accessible tree houses
are beautiful additions to natural play environments.
forestry General tree info for urban areas
Natural Resources Conservation Service: soil surveys & maps,
free help from the "Earth Team" to conserve environment;
- Willow structures for tips on building. Places to buy willow rods; Bluestem Nursery. Also buy Salix viminalis at local nurseries.
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