Thank you for visiting the home blog of Caliso Learning, a natural science-based business celebrating the beauty and ecology of our natural environments. Our goal is to connect you and your family with nature--actually, we want you to fall in LOVE with nature!

Here you will find nature-inspired articles and posts, family activities, personal stories, resources, and more--all with the goal to connect you with the benefits of nature for family fun and inspiration! Please enjoy and let us know what you like :) Follow us on Facebook for even more resources, more frequently!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Dynamic Duos: Partner Mandalas!

Inspired by a cooperative time-filler found in Family Fun magazine, I have found partner mandalas to be a great exercise for building creative confidence no matter what your artistic ability. Something you can do with the little ones, this was a fun artistic activity to do with my kindergartner.

Each artist gets one color marker and a square sheet of paper. 

Partners begin by drawing a circle in the center of their paper, then they swap sheets and add an element to the design (a ring of dots, dashes, zigzag lines, or a more detailed element). Continue swapping and adding elements until your mandala is finished.
The photos (bottom of the post) are the two mandalas created with my 5 year old son. We both liked seeing what each of us would add and how quickly the madalas grew.

Try these alternatives! 
  • Find a area with plenty of natural materials (rocks, leaves, twigs, petals, sand, etc.) and have each partner alternate turns adding a ring using these materials only.
  • Use brown, grey, and/or black markers to create mandala designs you can transform yet again by coloring.
  • Create a family mandala during the holidays or a vacation. Leave a jar of colored pens or pencils along with the ongoing design out where family members can add their own ring related to their experience(s). You can assign each family member a color or let them choose as they go. *Try to keep colors alternating
  • Make a journal madala. During your next vacation, retreat, or as a personal journaling exercise, add a daily ring to your madala design to represent the emotion or experience(s) from each day.


Sunday, December 4, 2011

Amazing Cephalopods!

Take a nature break with David Gallo, an enthusiastic ambassador for the sea and pioneer in ocean exploration, as he leads you through a deep sea and shallow water dive highlighting our favorite cephalopods like the octopus, squid, and cuttlefish!

Length 5:25 (minutes/seconds) Thank you to Caliso friend Laura H. for forwarding this clip! If video does not appear, click here to watch.

Source: www.ted.com/talks

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

My Kindergartner, Scorpions, & Stinkbugs—Oh My!

This time of year the weather cools down and the desert night invites exploration. We took advantage of a thin crescent moon combined with a hazy night sky to take my 5-year old son on his first scorpion hunt. I should mention our scorpion hunts are more of an unofficial survey, we’re just counting and sizing up how many individuals we find without collecting specimens. Living in the desert offers the perfect opportunity to scout scorpions which are easily seen using portable UV lights.

Searching for sand scorpions on the desert floor is an exiciting adventure for most, no matter what your initial feelings are at first, you end up having an interesting time. It is a favorite fall activity of mine and I couldn’t wait to get my son out there to experience the challenge and fun of a successful hunt. I couldn’t believe I had finally talked him into venturing out into the desert night with me and my cousin, and the scorpions did not disappoint!

At our first stop, just after dark we spotted an eloedes beetle (stink bug) and 13 sand scorpions in about 40 mintues, not bad. We decided to indentify the tiny scorpions as babies, kindergartners like my son, teenagers, a preschooler. They were all juveniles, so we decided to try our luck at another, nearby location.

We hit the jackpot at our second stop. Two more eloedes beetles! Yes, but oh the scorpions! We began to lose count at 25 scorpions in only about 30 minutes. We found babies, sub-adults and, just as we decided to head back to the car…the biggies—well big for sand scorpions (photos below). My son was getting tired, and my cousin theorized that more were coming out the later it got, including the big guys. We agreed that next time we should begin our hunt an hour or so after dark to test that theory :)

No matter their age or size, scorpion morphology stays the same.
Compare this tiny, half inch baby scorpion...
A "teenager" about one inch in length...
An adult sand scorpion about 2 inches in length. 2 1/2" to 3" with its "tail" flat.

My son was into it during our first stop, it was like a treasure hunt to him, but the tiny scorpions (or little lobsters as he first called them), weren’t impressing him. Especially since they stayed perfectly still. Maybe he was expecting a different kind of treasure. He even questioned if they were real. The adventure began to wear off for him along with his patience. However, he did get excited when he spotted the scorpions first and also when we found two large scorpions during our second stop :) I’m glad I left the whole natural history of the scorpion schpiel for another time. *wink*

Later, before bedtime I asked him if he had fun and he said, yep he really did (sans the stink bugs of which he didn’t like). YAY! I cheered inside, maybe just maybe he will be my scorpion-hunting buddy.

Thinking about giving scorpion hunting a try? READ THESE FIVE TIPS! First, read up on scorpions in your area: what species, if any, do you have in your area and what terrain you’re most likely to find them; how venomous are they? Avoid getting stung—do not harass, handle, touch, collect, or bother the scorpions you find.

Second, know your search area, scout it out in daylight first! Be very familiar with local hazards like cactus, snakes (we do not do this activity in the summer months), and man made hazards like junk piles, abandon wells/mines, temporary shelters, roads, etc.

Third, always wear closed in shoes and check your shoes and pants with the UV lights to make sure you don’t have any “hitchhikers.”

Fourth, skip the full and near full moon nights. Great for seeing your way through the desert night, but not for scorpions who seem to take cover, away from such a bright light (easier for predators to spy them). Choose the new moon or similar dark moon nights.

And finally, you need a UV light (black light). Flashlights are recommended but don’t use both simultaneously and do not rely on spotting scorpions with a white light, they are nearly impossible to see for most. Manuever your path slowly, using the black light only. Portable black lights can be found at some hobby stores, gem and mineral stores, auto accessory stores, and on line. Don’t forget the batteries.

Have fun and be safe!

Friday, October 28, 2011

From the archives: Creature “Spirits”

It's a busy little Halloween weekend here at Caliso, so we pulled a spooktacular post from the archives of witch--ooops, which we think you ghouls will enjoy!

It covers the paranormal--actually it covers the very normal activities and sounds of familiar creatures that just may explain the ghostly scream you heard beyond the trees, or why certain objects keep moving mysteriously around your home.

Please note that the links at the end of the post are not linking directly anymore. All we had to do was copy/paste the links to listen to the eerie wild animal calls; but oh so worth it as they are sure to send a chill down your spine (they sound amazingly like a human screams, and even a baby crying).

So, click on "Creature Spirits" below...if you dare. Mwahahahaaa!

Restore Your (Family) Nature: Creature “Spirits”: Confession time. I’m a huge fan of all shows that chase after evidence of ghosts, cryptozoological creatures (like Bigfoot), and UFOs. I can...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Leaf Me Never: Fall Leaf Garland Craft

Ah fall, quite possibly my FAVORITE time of year. For this desert native, I love autumn and the cooler temperatures it brings—perfect for hiking, camping, and just hanging outside, taking in nature. This family activity is a great craft to complete outdoors this time of year! It is easy and fun to create using nature’s beautiful fall leaves or at least being inspired by them. With this idea you can make a fall garland, a leaf booklet (use the hole and ribbon to create your book bind), a family portrait garland, place tags for a family dinner, or what ever else your creative mind takes you. Let’s grab some leaves and have fun!
You’ll need: Leaves (fake or real…if real, make sure they are still soft and bendy), glitter (think fall gold, orange, red, brown, yellow), hole puncher, glue, ribbon, scissors.
But we also recommend plastic or wax paper surface as glue will seep through leaves, family photos, mini clamps for holding pictures in place while drying, wire or wire ribbon for tendril affect.


Collect your leaves (even more adventurous to collect REAL fall leaves if those are available to you—just make sure they’re still soft and bendy). We used fake leaves because, well, we don’t have “fall” in the desert! You could make mini-garlands (faerie garlands) with smaller native leaves, something we’ll try some other day.

Make a hole with the hole punch near the top center of the leaf. Depending on how you want to hang them, that could be at the leaf stem, leaf tip, from the side or even near the center of the leaf.
Decorate your leaves. Here are some ideas: use a pen to draw, write messages, poems, jokes, or your favorite quote, glue glitter in designs or on the leaf edges, glue photos on the leaves and decorate with each one with glittery frames. Little ones can just dab glue about randomly and shake on some glitter…it will look fabulous! Sometimes it’s nice to leave some leaves blank to string in between your glittery delights, but how it’s made is entirely up to you!

Let your leaves completely dry before stringing! This is a good time for a snack break, take your nap, do your homework, or run around the yard for play exercise. You also could pick up the dog droppings or wash the dishes for mom or dad, but I was just thinking outloud.

String leaves for hanging. Leave about 6”—8” of ribbon (or wire) on each end for tying loops for hanging. String through the holes your punched earlier. We recommend looping the ribbon (or wire) around stems to keep leaves in place on your garland, or you can double loop the ribbon through the hole, this will also hold your leaf in place and keep in from sliding along the garland. If you are stringing through the center of the leave, try tying a loose knot on either side (both sides of your leaf) to help keep it from sliding. If using wire (our preference), be sure to leave lots of extra for making tendrils and still having enough left over for the end of your garland! You can always add wire at stems for a seamless line :)

For tendrils…wrap wire around a pencil or your finger. Remove finger or pencil ;) 

Ready to hang! Decorate a fall basket, a centerpiece, archway, outdoor niche, the gate or front door…hang your fall treasure anywhere you wish to enjoy.

Let us know how it goes, share photos of your garlands and any tips with us!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Breakfast Geology

Good Morning Bunnies! How about a little bacon and eggs for breakfast? We're pretty sure this is how geologists get their proteins and minerals ;)

We love this quirky find in the Hi-Desert Nature Museum's (Yucca Valley, CA) geology display.

Howlite is commonly found as carvings, or in jewelry. It is a porous mineral, easily dyed to look like turquoise because of the similar look of the veining patterns. Dyed howlite (or magnesite) is marketed as turquenite. Howlite is also sold in its natural state, sometimes under the names "white turquoise" or "white buffalo turquoise," or "white buffalo stone" (none of which are true turquoise).

Honey Onyx is a delicate, soft stone often used as a decorative and architectural stone for kitchen countertops, bathroom sinks, and as stone sheets and tiles. It is particularly beautiful when back lit.

Travertine is a sedimentary limestone deposited by hot mineral springs or in limestone caves ("flowstone"). It is sometimes marketed as travertine limestone or travertine marble (it is not a marble). Travertine is often formed in creeks or rivers, or in caves as stalagmites and stalactites. Sometimes flowstone cave structures are deposited into thin sheets called "draperies" or "curtains" with brown and beige layers that look like bacon--often called "cave bacon."

"Cave bacon," a type of flowstone. Image by DanielCD

Source Wikipedia

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Predator or Prey

My husband took our 4-year old to our favorite desert zoo and botanical park. One of their most recent additions is the North American Jaguar exhibit. As you enter the exhibit, you walk along a path surrounded by familiar Sonoran desert vegetation (familiar to us anyway!), where you can easily imagine this beautiful large cat lurking somewhere nearby. Careful observation yields jaguar tracks and even its scat—convincing enough to invite a little fear into the back of your mind, there’s no way this thing got out, right? Then you are at once upon the exhibit, with glass and fencing that blend away so easily that you can easily enter into the veil of a wild and free close encounter with this predatory cat. It was here that my husband and son had an amazing, albeit a little creepy experience.

My husband had to follow up on scheduled call and while he was doing that, my son sat in the little zoo wagon watching the jaguar. And the jaguar was watching him. Rather, the jaguar was stalking him. Each moment my husband would turn away from the jaguar (only seconds at a time), it moved closer to my son, always watching him. My son noticed the jaguar moving closer and told my husband. What a great learning opportunity my hubby thought, and so they decided to “test” it. Sure enough when my husband simply looked away, the jaguar would move in closer. When my husband was looking at the jaguar, the jaguar would glance at my husband. It moved quickly from the cover of one bush to another.

The photos are of the jaguar after it moved in, now crouched beside some bushes, less than 5 feet away from my son. Notice how his paw is forward in the second shot which to me, looks like he’s entering a “pounce” position. It was enough to give both my husband and son an uncomfortable feeling. In my sons words, “that was creepy daddy.”

I've often heard of similar experiences with young children and large cats at zoos, in fact years ago one of the mountain lions here used to watch small children very intently and show similar behaviour within its enclosure. I think it's a fascinating opportunity to see these elusive animals react in such an instinctive way. I imagine it’s an intense experience, especially when you realize YOU are the prey that is triggering this instinctive behavior. As for my son, he bravely returned to the exhibit (very reluctantly at first) in order to show me the jaguar that he, “thinks wanted to jump on me mommy.”

Only the week before my son enthusiastically learned about carnivores, herbivores, and omnivores in zoo camp, including his preschooler perspective, “I’m meat mommy, so there are animals that would want to eat me!” which led to this interesting opportunity to apply those same concepts when talking about his encounter with this particular meat-eater. (Not to mention an additional opportunity to reinforce some favorite bedtime stories on courage and compassion through a gentle and supportive pep talk on courage that helped my brave little guy return to see the same cat less than an hour later!)

It could end up being a memorable experience that will stay with him for a bite..er bit :)

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Spontaneous Critter Encounters!

This beautiful June Beetle flew into our car this morning just as we were leaving for zoo camp. Spontaneous critter encounters are the best! It was a great reminder to have handy a safe and secure critter catcher for up close viewing. These encounters are exciting and you want to be able to take advantage of such a wonderful moment with your children.

A mason jar with a screen lid, a jar with its lid punched with nail holes, or a small pet store critter carrier are all great standby's for safely catching, securing and viewing unexpected visitors before releasing. Having more than one on hand is sometimes useful as we have all three but this plastic one was perfect for taking with us for sharing. Why not keep one in your car for the park, the trail, or when camping, or at a friend’s house—you never know when a critter may stop by to say hello for a short visit!

We recommend releasing critters after a few hours of viewing—so get those field guides out, take some photos, and identify it while you can. Use a hand lens to get up close viewing that you wouldn’t normally be able to do. It’s fascinating! Even though you are being VERY careful with them by not moving the container around or tapping on it, you can imagine it is likely a stressful situation for your critter. This can affect their health very, very quickly as it is not an ideal environment for them (being enclosed, experiencing unnatural temperature variations and being away from their natural resources and cycles they rely on throughout the day or night). Just keep that in mind but be sure to enjoy this spontaneous gift from nature, then release your critter near where you found it.

Three cheers for cool, green, metallic beetles! Bugs--bugs--bugs!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

SDBG's Insect Fair & Hamilton Children’s Garden

For those of us who live in the southern California desert, summer temperatures tend to limit our options for outdoor play time and exploration. One way to get around this is to escape to cooler areas like the mountains or the beach. We enjoyed a great day trip to the Hamilton Children’s Garden at the San Diego Botanic Gardens (formerly Quail Bontanic Gardens) in Encinitas, CA. This weekend’s event was their annual Insect Fair and we went especially for that event.

We learned about a variety of native and exotic insects, reptiles, and birds. Many live critters were on hand to get visitors up close to the many creatures we share our planet with everyday. All of these first encounters started near the wonderful Undersea Succulent Garden which is filled with beautiful tiled sculptures, lava stone, huge shells, and marine glass planted planted among succulents that looked very much like ocean coral, sea stars and other marine critters.

Nearby, young visitors and their parents played in nature with some water play, bubbles, plant creatures, garden play houses, dino dig, a miniature railroad, and crafts within the Seeds of Wonder garden, especially created for toddlers and preschoolers. While on the other side of the park, the laughter and energy of children climbing up and under a huge tree house, splashing in a stream, creating music in a musical garden, spelling and smelling in an alphabet garden, herb and salad gardens, exploring a grass maze, and boulder jumping in the "rock hopping" garden (you must hop from boulder to boulder, no touching the ground!), led the day for families in the equally fantastic Hamilton Children’s Garden.

What an amazing place! You will likely find something for the entire family to experience between the amazing gardens, integrated sculptures, children’s play areas and specialty gardens, trails and lookouts. We found a lot of hidden whimsy throughout the day in the form of critters, “secret” hideaways and paths, artful, enchanting gardens and inspiring displays.

Be sure to visit their site for more information about the Seeds of Wonder garden of delights for the little ones and the huge tree house to be explored and climbed on in the Hamilton Garden! Some of their annual events include the Chocolate Festival, Fairy Festival, Garden of Lights, Lady Bug Day, Orchid Festival and much more! Click San Diego Botanic Garden

If you’d like to see more pictures from our day at the San Diego Botanic Garden check out our Facebook album.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Sun Painting

 A great project to try for celebrating the beginning of summer is sun painting. You can usually find sun painting kits, sun-sensitive papers & paints online or in nature, craft, and educational catalogs and stores. But for this post we went “old school,” simply using dark construction paper (avoiding fade resistent/archival papers).

Do you recognize any of
the objects we used?
By experimenting with junk drawer items along with objects found in nature and in my son’s toy box, we enjoyed an easy, mess-free activity. Creative play emerges when you begin to arrange your items in patterns, themes, radial designs, or if you decide to cut out paper snowflakes or other designs to lay atop the dark paper.
  • Dark colored construction paper
  • Natural objects (leaves, twigs, pine cones, and so on) or household objects (scissors, keys, combs, and so on)
Easy-peezy directions:
  • Place paper outside in direct sunlight
  • Arrange objects on paper in random order, patterns, a mandala-inspired design, etc.
  • Leave objects in place for a couple of hours (make sure paper remains in sun during that time!)
  • Remove objects and admire your sun painting creation!
  • The flatter the object lays, the crisper the image it will leave behind.
  • Use small rocks or other weighted items to hold objects flat or in place, but watch for any shadow they might create in your design.
Enjoy collecting your objects and experimenting with their layout. This is a great “background” activity to add to a summer day. My son took his afternoon nap during the couple of hours needed for our images to appear nicely. You can do this project in between seeing a movie, enjoying some pool time, taking a hike or bike ride while you wait for your sun painting.

Happy Summer Solstice!

For a "how-to" sun painting with colorful sun-sensitive paints, please see this link.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Floating Mandalas

This weekend our family enjoyed a fun day at one of our favorite local preserves, Whitewater Preserve. I manned an ongoing workshop for their 2nd Annul Water Celebration event, where participants created beautiful floating mandalas made with natural items. Using stems, sticks, leaves, petals, and blossoms visitors arranged these colorful plant elements in a variety of patterns and designs to create their own, wonderful floating mandalas. Our youngest participant was 3 only years old! Mandala creators of all ages enjoyed this relaxing activity throughout the day.

A traditional mandala is an ancient circular design which typically represents the universe. It can also be a symbolic expression to connect with the "self." For our mandalas, we were hoping participants would connect with their creative self through nature.

This is a perfect summertime activity to try at home! All you need is a bowl of water, small dish towel, plant clippers or scissors, and some plant material from your yard like: flowers (to keep whole or for petals), leaves, sticks, seed pods, lightweight bark, etc. Anything natural that you discover will float! Experiment with different ways to use your materials, some of our participants ripped up petals into tiny pieces of "floral confetti" that added a delicate touch to their designs. Sticks were used in many different ways to add visual lines, accents, floral rafts, bridges, barriers and more in many designs. Even your tiniest mandala creator will be able to create something pleasing to the eye, not to mention have a great time playing with these treasures in the water!

Here are the mandalas created throughout the day (click photos for larger images):



Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Making Tracks Hiking Stick

 This morning my 4-year old son and I made trail sticks (aka walking sticks) together. I thought my little guy would get into creating his own hiking stick with either trail symbols or animal tracks. Since he is familiar with, and into animal tracks right now, I went with that theme. Here are the five simple steps to our activity:

1. Find the perfect stick. We already had the perfect piece of wood stashed in the garage—found ages ago—that I decided to saw in half to create two pint-sized yet sturdy hiking poles for my son, but it would be a naturally fun extension to go outside in search of a stick to use!

2. Note your child’s “sweet spot.” I recommend first having your child grasp their hiking stick to see where their hand will naturally lay when using. Leave that part blank, free of any drawings that will wear off or embellishments that will affect their grip.

3. Keep it simple, a quick reference. We chose four commonly encountered tracks and I made photocopies of these along with a 1:1 scale ruler to add to his stick for measuring tracks along the trail. Older kids can draw their own tracks with the animal’s name, and actual track sizes copied from field guides, along with a ruler guide (make sure it’s drawn to scale), 6” is fine. For younger children, print out tracks (shrink images to fit stick), with the name of the animal and actual track size. Have little ones color in and glue them onto their sticks. (Hint: Coat glued on tracks with ModPodge Matte Finish to seal for longer wear.)

4. Be sure to include the ruler! For measuring tracks and other things you encounter on the trail. We ended up using our pre-measured print out to hand draw our rulers directly onto our sticks, because we liked the look of that better :)

5. Embellish sticks with drawings (my son added a heart), ribbon, yarn, feathers, shells, or scrap leather pieces if you wish. I recommend placing them part way down the stick, below your child’s track drawings and hand grasp for comfort and ease of use. We added found feathers to ours.

Time to enjoy your unique and handy creation! Take your hiking stick on your next hike as a useful tracking guide. Keep adding to it: add trail symbols that could help save your life(!), attach a small compass to the tip, attach a hand lens to one of your ribbons, add feathers, etc. The designs and handy uses are practically endless :)

Measuring tracks...


Good for heading up tree-root ramps too!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Bird Seed Eggs

On Easter Sunday, we headed out to our favorite nature preserve for a little nature play and egg hunting. Mother Nature had other plans for us though, as it turned out to be way too windy for our original family plans, foiled by constant winds and serious gusts. Just before leaving we went inside the ranger station to talk with our favorite ranger who surprised us with egg-shaped bird seed gifts they were offering to visitors to hide for the wildlife on the preserve! A wonderful surprise for us, and my little one eagerly left his bird seed eggs near a water source for critters to find. It was a great addition to our day.

Here is a simple recipe to try these yourself (mold into any shape to make any occassion special):
1/3 cup gelatin
1-1/2 cups water
8 cups birdseed

Directions: Mix gelatin and water over low heat until the gelatin is melted and clear. Remove from heat and stir in birdseed. Stir until there is no dry seed. Form mixture into egg shapes. Use plastic Easter eggs as a mold to get the egg shape. Refrigerate for two to four hours and dry on baking rack for three days. (From Angie Dixon's bird seed gifts at http://www.oopsiedaisydesign.net/)

Hiding our bird seed eggs.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Paint Chip Play

Spring wildflower season is a great time of year to whip out your paint chip rings for fun color matching with your tiny explorers! A Caliso favorite :)

But while at our local improvement store, we couldn’t help but notice the variety of names to be found on paint chips. Looking through a section devoted to childrens’ rooms, we found several fun descriptions that reminded us of our own “little sprout.”

We collected a few examples to bring home and had little fun with collage making using a few family photos.

Collect a few paint chips the next time you’re picking up a pack of lightbulbs or new plants fo the garden and spread them out on the table. The visual of plenty of color along with their descriptive names will inspire an hour or so of collage making for your child. Or use the names & colors as prompts for your little ones to create some unique drawings or for writing poems and stories. After studying a bunch of paint chip names, you can also have your child come up with their own descriptive names for colors found in your yard or on the trail!

A random handful of paint chips can get
the imagination flowing, try connecting
a bunch of paint color names in a silly
story or poem:

I was taking my turtle named Pudding
for a walk when I came upon a Princess
dressed all in pink. She was very upset
and when I asked her what was wrong
she cried, “I shall not be allowed to eat
Mac and Cheese tonight nor grape juice
popsicles because I oops-ccidently got a
grass stain on my pretty pink overalls
and on the toes of my preciously pink
Ballet Slippers!”

“Oh dear that is a shame,” I sighed. I 
scratched at those two freckles on my
wrist when I suddenly got an idea that
would help Princess Pink! Hush, Hush”
I comforted her. I can help…

Friday, March 25, 2011

Try This For Nature Fun!

A common shape.
Recently I had fun running around an oasis searching for the "familiar" in an somewhat unfamiliar environment. Unfamiliar in the sense that looking for the common words or descriptions I was in search of, one would not normally consider a natural environment to find these things.

It was a great morning for all of us who participated. We retrained our eyes and brains to observe nature by its components, individual pieces that when looked at them with a different "eye" would present something before us that was actually quiet familiar. For example, natural components like branches became letters of the alphabet, palm fronds became a face, an animal's burrow became a common shape.

This is a great exercise to introduce children who might feel a little apprehensive about venturing into a "wild" environment. Bringing the familiar into the unfamiliar will help young or new naturalists jump into exploring their surroundings without so much of the anxiety that some may have, especially first-timers.
Give it try with this short list to get you started--the only rule is that there are no rules, finds are based on each individual's interpretation of that word/description! Have fun photographing your finds or identifying them with a parent partner:
  • a common shape(s)
  • support
  • a letter(s) from the alphabet
  • up
  • shelter
  • stripes
  • reflection
  • a found face
  • 3-colors (in one object)
  • opposites
(Don't forget to go over safety/animals/potential hazards important for your chosen environment.)

A letter from the alphabet.

A common shape.