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Alternate Activity 2: Fairy Houses
Activity time: 35 minutes
Materials for Activity
- A basket for each child
- A shoebox or a heavy piece of cardboard for each child's fairy house
- Scissors, tape and glue to share
Preparation for Activity
- Identify an outdoor space, preferably with trees, where the children can safely walk from your meeting room to collect small items from nature.
- If the group is large, arrange for additional adults to join this activity to help supervise children outside.
Description of Activity
By sending children outdoors with a mission, this activity helps focus their attention on the twigs, stones, leaves, and other small objects that make up the natural world.
Invite the children to put on their outerwear and come outside to collect the things they will need to build a home for a fairy. Give each child a basket and take the group outside to the location you have chosen. Tell them their fairy home must be made entirely from items found in nature. Suggest they look for twigs, moss, pine cones, leaves, small stones or acorns. Allow them to look, touch and gather.
Even children who do not believe in fairies can use their imaginations and be creative. Tell the "realist" they can make a home that a grasshopper, frog or even beetles might want to live in. The weather need not be perfect for this activity, as long as the ground is dry for children to pick up items and the children have appropriate outdoor clothing for the temperature.
Bring the group back inside with at least ten minutes to make fairy houses by placing or gluing/taping the objects they have found on cardboard or inside shoe boxes.
Weather permitting, you may like to build the fairy houses outside. After gathering objects, the children can make fairy houses outdoors - perhaps leaving them there for potential residents to find.
Including All Participants
If children in the group have limited mobility, be sure to choose an accessible outdoor spot. If any children may be unable to stoop to examine and pick up small objects, have the whole group work outdoors in pairs or triplets so any child who needs help will get help from a peer.