Calling all Explorers!
We are incredibly excited about this new offering for all DAH members! In addition to our child-led Nature Adventures, Driftless Explorers will help kids connect to nature. Driftless Explorers will be adult-led, however, with varying games, crafts, and activities to encourage fun-filled learning using natural history interpretation techniques.
All Explorers will be encouraged to keep a nature journal and to explore the natural world around them on a deeper level through observation and regular hikes and outings. For those interested in logging their achievements, they can earn wooden tokens hand crafted by one of our own DAH dads to add to their braided rope sash.
Explorers can choose their own level, but we'll encourage them to begin sticking to one level or another after a trial period.
Wildlings are for the younger kids, focused on nature appreciation and exploration.
Adventurers are for the middle aged kids, focused on increased safety and independence in nature as well as increasing ecological knowledge.
Rangers are for the older kids, focused on further increasing safe, independent exploration and appreciation of nature, including conservation knowledge.
All Driftless Explorers will learn through activities in the following categories:
Foundations: Local animal and plant identification, hiking, visiting public lands, stargazing, nature journaling, and more.
Nature Appreciation: Scavenger hunts, night hikes, camping, picnics, season appreciation, and more.
Crafting: Bird feeders and birdhouses, sun catchers, bat houses, finding natural patterns, pressing flowers, rubbing leaves, natural art, and more.
Natural Knowledge: Observation of animals, trees, and insects, photography, wildflower spotting, weather tracking, plant care, water sampling, and more.
Leadership: Perseverance, care for others, good sportsmanship, community service, deduction and memory skills, storytelling, and more.
Wilderness Skills: Orienteering, geocaching, survival skills, ciphers, animal tracks, Morse code, packing and camping skills, tool safety, other safety skills, and more.
Ecological Knowledge: Critter communities, habitats, food webs, migration, adaptations, interdependencies, ecosystems, and more.
Environmental Social Knowledge: How people use animals and the natural resources around us, how to plan for the future, how views change over time, and more.
Conservation: Crowding, forest fires, land-use planning, wildlife related occupations, water sheds, life cycles, and more.
Junior Ranger Badges: Many National Parks Service Junior Ranger Badges are available to be earned from home, and we will be working together to complete several of the available badges!
Resources used: Among the hiking and crafting and generally enjoying the beauty of nature, we'll be doing fun education games and crafts from the following resources:
Project Wild and Project Wild Aquatic
Project Learning Tree
Our Mississippi: Education Activities for the Upper Mississippi
Scouting for Boys and the Dangerous Book for Boys
and various local field guides.